architecture and id

hi …i think architecture is a large scale image of industrial desgining as the basics are same …its more focused …am an architecture graduate planning to go for id for masters …but …am confused …if it is really needed to do a masters in id …or can i go about trying the same problem solvng analytical mind + aesthetical outlook in id…plz let me know ur views

i think architecture is a large scale image of industrial desgining as the basics are same

On a basic level all design is the same… but there is a reason why architiecture, industrial design, set design, interior design, etc are all different programs. There are some major differences and they are not the same.

I have a friend doing architecture in Pratt. We started out at around the same time, and from his portfolio, which I assume is above average, I can tell that they have a totally different emphasis and way of thought. ID pays a lot of attention to details, down to the kind of screw you will be using. Architects aren’t going to care about that. Their projects are normally much longer than ID. They have a different set of responsibilities. They probably have to get involved in the PR thing a lot more than ID designers.

So it’s 2 totally different directions you are looking at.

why is it that some of the best and most famous designs were done by architects? hmmm

Big nose. Little dick.


Most famous maybe… but best? And what design are you talking about? Product?

If you are referring to pieces like Frank Ghary’s furniture… well, he can barely make a living out of them. Yes, they are famous, they are interesting, but they don’t function well enough to be a product with reasonable affordability. For a while he couldn’t even afford to renovate his own house.

No matter what kind of design you are talking about, you cannot say that one is the best.

Frank is my favourite architect no doubt, but I think it takes a whole another set of skills to design products.

Architecture and ID are today totally diifferent fields. I’m well read on architecture and the differences are more than scale.

First, good ID has a very intimate relation with their users. This means some kind of organized research methods. This was established by Dreyfuss in the ‘30’s. Architecture seems to impose its belief for how someone should use its’ works. FLW is a good example of this. He designed many low ceilings. I was hired as a tour guide at Taliesen West, and the guides always had to warn groups to duck entering the house.

Second, ID is manufactured. It’s funny that people mention design by architects, because many of the famous architect-designs aren’t designed to be mass produced. In other words, they are not ID at all, but rather art. Rarely does architecture look to mass production, even with the current crop of McMansions. They are still made on site for the most part and jerry rigged together by skilled construction workers. The exception of this might be Moshe Safdie’s Habitat '67 here in Montreal. The whole bathroom was fabricated from three pieces of fiberglass, and each unit was assembled off site and placed onto the final site with a crane. If it had been manufactured to the scale M. Safdie had wanted (3000 units) it would have been far cheaper than conventional building costs. Unfortunately short sighted bean counters slashed his budget and he only built 150 at the same cost as conventional means. On a side note, an architect taunted me by calling me a communist when I suggested manufactured building would be ideal for some construction projects.

Third, the focus of architecture tends to be around aesthetics and occasionally pressing the boundaries of technology. Rarely do I see an architect talk about reducing the effort involved in living in one of their environments (I must note an exception I saw in a AARP magazine about a house in NM I think. The architect had designed the space to be user friendly to seniors by removing any steps to climb, and cleverly redesigning the kitchen to allow easy access to cupboards).

Fourth, our education has essentially branched. There is a popular myth that the Bauhaus is the direct predecessor to current ID teaching. In some places this is lamentably so, but good schools well being inspired by the innovative studio teaching of the Bauhaus, now teach a very ID oriented curriculum which shares almost nothing with architecture. Look to the founders like Loewy, Dreyfuss, Bel Geddes, Teague etc. for what ID really is.

“why is it that some of the best and most famous designs were done by architects? hmmm”

Lastly, no. If you are really into ID, you will know alot other designers and designs of products that no architect could design without going back to school for 2-4 years (or at least having the help of some good IDers).


it’s pretty different.

Let’s put it this way, would you like to live in a house designed by an industrial designer? through huricane season?

Buildings are for the most part one offs. No two are exactly the same (except my house, of which there are about 500 of in my development) and they last a long time for the most part.

Products are designed to be bought by many people but typicly don’t last 30 years or through 5 owners and 3 renovations. They are bought for their implicit function (does it tell time, make coffee, get me to work…) and express a persons point of view of the moment (you might be able to get away with a pair of pink shoes, you don’t have to wear them every day, and after 6 months their history anyway, a pink house is a different story)

This is all pretty obvious and boring I know, but it makes for a large split in the mindsets of the individual fields. Get into an ID program and I’m sure you could enlighten us as to the more specific differences right away. Do me this favor, just don’t go making tea kettles with eggs on 'em.

why is it that some of the best and most famous designs were done by architects? hmmm

Ever sit in a chair designed by Mies for a long time. Not comforable but nice to look at.

Agree 100%. Designers and architects should go to Falling Water and see for themselvs. FLW’s chairs were designed to be looked at and not sat on and all that fame hasn’t made the chairs better. The house may be cool but not the products. Same goes for Graves’s stuff. Ever seen some of that stuff in person? A good photographer sure can make a piece of shit look beautiful! Those things sell because of his name and people want to say they have something of his and not because it’s good design. Graves idea of product design is to take a natural shape and stick it on everything in sight.

Big part of ID isn’t just about ergonomically design handles or flip-flops that can be sustainable.

Design isn’t all about useful things.

Eventhough someone can also argue about its statement, Design can be
social statement as well as Desire of being in the Material world and ego to be seen and outstanding from the group.

Simply it can be beautiful to look at just like a piece of art work.
Useless than? I don’t think so. It is already doing its work. Inspiration and power of being different.

Thesedays, something different means it has statement to be argued or discussed as if it can change other traditional values.

If everythings are perfect, it will be so meaningless life for us…
Process is the part of Design, and it becomes a part of human evolution.


I did what you want to do. I have a BArch from Pratt dating to 1994. Worked in the Arch field for 8 years and got tired of hearing how the things I want to do are not in Sweets. I can print drawings, but I can’t print a building.?. At least now I can print its parts ala Foster.

A MID is not a career change. You do not learn enough in that short of time. Yes, one can work at an ID firm afterwards, but you will probably do the same shit–CAD jockey of sorts.

I got my MID because I wanted to explore a particular thesis idea and reopen my eyes to larger design issues. In addition, a master’s enables me to teach as well as make me a better candidate in R&D areas of architecture firms.

If you want to design a lamp, go do it. If you want to design a lamp that responds to your emotions and the weather outside or the stockmarket or size of your email inbox then go get your MID. In the end, it is not the form that matters, but what it is doing during its lifetime and what happens to it afterwards.

I recently graduated from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Check it out.

Design isn’t all about useful things.

Hmmm? Don’t confuse design (product in this case) with art or craft.
That’s like saying graphic design isn’t all about communication. Yeah maybe it isn’t all about being ‘useful’ or ‘communication’ but these concepts are (many times) what separate them from art and craft. (Granted art and craft can be utilitarian too.)

BTW although I am the one who complained about the Mies chairs (and many other architects that designed furniture) in defense I must say that the Eames did wonderful furniture design.

Average life expectancy of a building in the US: 30 years. That’s pretty low when you think of all the money a building costs. Sure they can be renovated…I think good design could be as well. With any design, buildings or pens, one has to make a compromise between the cost and the life span. A cel phone which you could upgrade the electronics, upgrade the battery technology and replace the screen on would have a long life span allowing a user to both modify the phone for themselves and replace parts that are no longer compatible with the network. However, such a phone would undoubtedly cost more to manufacture and support, and so far, consumers seem unwilling to buy into that. Interestingly, low tech objects DO last a long time. Ever see Antique’s Roadshow? Most of the products on there are from a period pre-industrial where I don’t believe we could call them ID, but I think in 500 years people will still be collecting Rashid garbage cans and Ikea dinnerware. Those could certainly survive.

Design always needs an emotional interface, the same with architecture. When the emotion is an expression of the designers though, it becomes art. Even architects know this as Safdie wrote a book called “private jokes in public places”. In the more art part of the architecture and design worlds around the '80’s there was a movement to do just that. Graves and Sotsass were some of the major instigators. Luckily, in the ‘90’s design found its’ way again…to be honest, I’m not sure about architecture. At least alot of what I see win awards isn’t always user friendly.

Where do you thing that Design history diversed from?
Where these products were inspired by and born?
Of course Art is different from arts. Fine Arts are different from ID.
comtemporary art is different from the craft arts. Craft movement was
what made contemporary art formed like today’s, and Industrial Design forms were also inspired by crafts and arts-Fine arts and Fashion designs as well as communication design.
Piet Mondrian inspired various Minimalistic movements which diversed into
furniture design that you see now as well. Why do you thing Eames were highly marked? Because it was the cross between art and ID=engineer and form.
I recognize highly remarked ID today as what these movements carried as a part of human evolution in Arts and the way we use our tools as using arts as everyday situations.

Is Hlla Jongerius a Fine Artist, Craft lady or a postmodernistic Idesigner?
What about Karim Rashid? Do you see his design useless or useful?
For me, I see them as intellectual designers who chose themselves inbetween art and ID.

Of course there are milliion other designer who cares about useful things and they are the people who moves Product markets into handy tools for us.

~mmm? Don’t confuse design (product in this case) with art or craft.
That’s like saying graphic design isn’t all about communication.

I don’t know about you…but for me what moves me are art like forms and craft like manufacturability in design. A style that leads into natural use of function. What grabs me in graphic design is not all about perfectly organized fonts and easy at eyes layouts. What I like about post modern graphics are those across between Fine arts and traditional graphics.

What I like about post modern graphics are those across between Fine arts and traditional graphics.

Yes but it is a combination of both. Funny but you don’t see a lot of that kind of design in business. Mostly in Design magazines or music.

Have you ever looked at 1970’s Journalism papers and magazines?
If 1970’s graphic designers were here to observe what TIME and NEWSWEEK look like in layout design as well as other business journals, I bet they will call it too artistic and expressive, or even too colorful and over designed.
UPS’s newly designed logo tells no other betterness than old-one, but it is rather a
decision to follow the movement-using 3D program into a simple logo design. Communication in Form tell us different stories within what our acceptance and how we were changed to see things into different views.

Business is still conservative in terms of using communication design.
But who knows more art like communication will be approach as Time shift.
Future is not only tomorror. it is now and we don’t notice it because of yesterday’s leftovers.

sorry that it became like useless debate.

I see the future as various department of Arts as one giant blackhole. Everything interchanges and influence on eachother’s reasons and developments.

What limits us is that we are not that smart to learn every faces of those
baster children of ARTs. But if there is someone who knows one or two, it
will be the next break through in Design history.

UPS’s newly designed logo tells no other bitterness than old-one, but it is rather a decision to follow the movement-using 3D program into a simple logo design. Communication in Form tell us different stories within what our acceptance and how we were changed to see things into different views.

I don’t agree. They decided to update the logo because it was dated. The original logo is an abstraction of a package… tied up in brown paper and string. No one sends packages this way anymore. Furthermore UPS provides more services:

UPS said the change reflects the significant broadening of capabilities that has occurred in recent years as the company expanded across the globe and introduced a portfolio of new supply chain services. The company will continue to use the color brown for its operations, but the logo change includes elimination of the package with a string bow atop the shield.

Using a 3D application and more simplified imagery was just part of the toolset needed to create the updated look.

…sounds like more of business strategy than update of classic logo.
Alteration in logo is the current trendy movement believe or not.
You can start from your own mac or window application logos to coca cola’s C2 addtion for their coke line with using clean cut designs.

Here is some other people’s opinions about UPS… :wink: