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Why is design "Made in the USSR" invisible in design history
School of Design, Linnaeus University, Växjö, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8021-8381
2013 (English)In: Crafting the Future: 10th European Academy of Design Conference: Proceedings, 2013, 1-12 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The invitation text to this conference asks whether the "core activities" of design and designing have changed over time. But is there even any common platform shared by design historians from where such a question can be asked? In order to find out this out, we need to look closer at what constitutes that very canon of design history.

This presentation will explore why design made in the USSR has hitherto been little visible in the literature of design history. Is the exclusion of design made in the Eastern Bloc from the design history canon due to a belief that little existed apart from inept copies made from blueprints of western originals, thus not interesting enough to analyse? Or is the reason for the due to a concept that design did not play an important role in the Soviet Union?

Founded in Moscow in 1962, VNIITE, the Russian abbreviation for the All-Union Scientific Research Institute for Technical Aesthetics, quickly expanded to include thousands of collaborators into what became the biggest institute for industrial design worldwide, and promoted a new attitude towards industrial production. Thus with design then obviously having implications in the Soviet Union, - what tools would be required to make this design as it was developed in the USSR, visible on its own terms? And could it even be so that there is something for us to be learned from the design experience from behind the iron curtain?

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. 1-12 p.
Keyword [en]
design history canon, Soviet Union
National Category
Art History Design
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-114054ISBN: 978-91-979541-5-0OAI: diva2:789282
10th European Academy of Design Conference, Gothenburg, Sweden, April 17-19 2013
Swedish Research Council, 421-2005-2285Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, RJ-P11-029:1
Available from: 2015-02-18 Created: 2015-02-18 Last updated: 2015-12-02Bibliographically approved

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