020: Wabi-Sabi : Imperfect, Impermanent, and Incomplete

Finally! (after 19 posts…)

I’ve found my main point of my project. Remember I’ve been talking about doing something about typography under the idea of ‘imperfection’ and I’ve been thinking really hard until my head is nearly exploded about what it is I want to focus on/ base on.

So I end up reading about the Japanese world view ‘Wabi-Sabi’. It is described as a beauty of ‘imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete’ (according to Leonard Koren, from his book Wabi-Sabi: for Artists, Designers, Poets and Philosophers). Wabi-Sabi is based on a concept of understandings and desires of imperfection in nature by Japanese.

The word ‘Wabi’ means the worship of imperfection, out of trend, outcast. To avoid being socialized, being alone, and having simple life closes to nature.

The word ‘Sabi’ means lonesomeness, loneliness, emptiness, nothingness, still, and calm.

In the world that everyone turns to technology and conveniences. We all seem like everything around us is heading toward perfection. Advertisement presents excessively information and human wants to win nature with all those technologies. Which this affects how people live because they are influenced.

But Wabi-Sabi focuses on leaning toward naturalistic. To understand the imperfect nature instead of winning it. And it also relates to Buddhism in term of ‘nothing is permanent’. Wabi-Sabi is opposed to modern thoughts. Therefore it is the way of thinking that helps to slow down the way people live nowadays, make them stop and think about their own aesthetics.

 

So, I want to apply this idea on typography through digital medium. I would like to see if types can speak louder (in term of communication) and explore how types could represent this simple aesthetic to audiences through their imperfect forms. How audiences perceive the message and emotive responses on visual presentation (typographic installation). I choose not to use voices because each person perceives things differently and I want to leave time and space for the audiences to think and re-think about the idea. I know typography is listed as a beauty form of type but this project is not gonna be styles of types that are presented, but the message behind deconstructed/imperfect types deliver the aesthetic of Wabi-Sabi.

 


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