A Lesson in Anthropomorphism and Design….

Leonardo Da Vinci, a man of many skills including painter, sculptor, and architect, opened up a new concept toward design that reflected a theory of proportions and how it relates to humans.  He demonstrated this concept in a world renowned drawing called, The Vitruvian Man, which was based on the work of the architect  Vitruvius.  In this  document he demonstrated how the human body is sectioned off into simple geometric proportions such as a circle and a square, which can be used to understand other proportion theories such as The Golden Section and Gestalt Theory.  These theories led new aged designers to a world where there were no limits to design.  By using these theories and logic, designers in our modern world are able to create boundary breaking designs and make them functional.  Anthropomorphism is a genre of design that studies these traditional theories and juxtaposes them with modern Avant Garde logics.

What is anthropomorphism?

Anthropomorphism is any attribution of human characteristics (or characteristics assumed to belong only to humans) to other animals, non-living things, phenomena, material states, objects or abstract concepts, such as organizations, governments, spirits or deities.  When you start to look at this concept and how it relates to design, we find out that many famous artists and designers around the world and throughout the generations have been learning from this concept and how it relates to design.

Contemporary examples of what anthropomorphism in architecture:

Contemporary examples of what this may look like in furniture design is shown below:

This style of furniture design represents the Avant Garde movement, because it pushes the boundaries of design to ergonomical and aesthetic characteristics, while introducing “shock value”.  Louis Sullivan, world-renowned architect whose apprentice was Frank Lloyd Wright, emphasized that “Form follows function”. When designing a piece of furniture with artistic characteristics, you must keep in mind that the piece must also be functional.  This opens up the designer’s eye to antyhropometry, which is the study of the branch of the human sciences that deals with body measurements: particularly with measurements of body size, shape, strength and working capacity.

Here at Fabrics and Frames Furniture, we are constantly thinking about how the client is going to be using our product, and how we can improve the functionality of the product for the client.  Throughout the 34 years that Fabrics and Frames has been in business we have assisted clients with their special needs by finding ergonomical solutions to make their custom piece of furniture more functional for their specific use, while keeping aesthetics in mind.  Some major factors that we consider when designing a piece of furniture are seating height, arm height, back height and lumbar support.  We also give our customers choices in cushion firmness to make the piece the most functional for them. Although stucture is a key issue for us, we also want to make sure that the piece of furniture that we design for our clients will meet their everyday needs. Each one of our clients comes in with their own specific needs and we try to meet all of them. Each piece that we create is unique in that it reflects each individual customer’s style and purpose.

Ergonomic standards will vary depending on who the client is.  We understand  that different ages, nationalities, and genetic makeup will affect the ergonomics of a piece of furniture.  In past Fabrics and Frames blogs, we have discussed how our furniture is made up of hardwoods and how they have a spring system  in the furniture piece that will give it structural support.  These key elements are important because if you don’t understand the limits that your piece can support,  you run the risk of it malfunctioning in the future.

Designers, engineers, and architects are great examples of people who understand the ergonomics of any product. In order to design a product that has anthropomorphic characteristics, you must understand on how it will be used.  Remembering that…Aesthetics are nothing without function!…leads the “designer” to create something that will not only make a statement but give a presence of heirarchy in any setting.  Regardless if you are traditional or contemporary in design choice, you must remember your basics!

For more information about designing or where to get custom looks like these please visit our website:

www.fabricsandframes.com

We are currently located at 5322 Alpha Rd, Dallas, Texas 75240. 972-385-4097.  Please contact us if you have any questions about this blog at andy@fabricsandframes.com, and or follow us on Facebook!http://www.facebook.com/pages/Fabrics-and-Frames-Furniture/156825517684205

Writen By: Erica Guajardo

Edited By: Linda Decuir

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5 thoughts on “A Lesson in Anthropomorphism and Design….

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