Research for an independent study between Kristian Bjornard and Devin Halladay, exploring the synthesis of form and aesthetics, and the ideological context of those syntheses.
In recognizing that the graphic designer is essentially a public servant dressed up in an artist's clothes — i.e. that design is a cog in huge cultural infrastructures — we realize that design is a social act, a social exchange. It involves interpreting an entity's ideology through one's own and projecting it into the public like a lightshow — or for Marx, like a camera obscura.
Circling back around to this after a long while…I'd like to try to start summarizing some things. The connection between aesthetics and ideology is obviously there but much more expansive than we envisioned at the outset of this study — ideology is pervasive in the transmission of symbols, on both sides of the equation (sender and receiver), and can be used to great effect in both the production of cultural artifacts and in the critique of culture. There's no escaping it — ideology is blood. (To be safe: ideology is innate). What's critical is that designers begin to understand the way their worldview influences their work all the way through its symbolic exchange with the viewer. Equally important is understanding how your work will be interpreted and used by the ideologies of others.