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PRODUCT 03: DESIGN OF CONTEMPORARY PRODUCTS [ARCH 729 - Fall 2009]


CREDITS Studio Professor: Josh Owen Lecturer Architecture info@joshowen.com http://www.joshowen.com B.A., B.F.A., Cornell University M.F.A., Rhode Island School of Design The work of industrial designer and educator Josh Owen is at once simple, practical and creative. Although typologies that Owen creates are commonly described as refined, iconic or minimalist, he defines function in humanistic terms, combining clarity of purpose and functional efficacy with emotive and tactile qualities chosen to align strategically with industry. Owen is the president of Josh Owen LLC in Philadelphia and is an associate professor of industrial design at Philadelphia University where he holds the title of Craig R. Benson Chair for Innovation. His projects are produced by major manufacturers and have won many awards. Owen’s work is included in the permanent design collections of the Centre Georges Pompidou, the Denver Art Museum, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Chicago Athenaeum. His work has been featured in major exhibitions, numerous books on design and is regularly included in critical design discourse.

Course Assistant: Bryce Gibson Lecturer Architecture bryceg@gmail.com B.S., University of Texas B.S., University of Houston

Bryce Gibson is a product designer new to Philadelphia who is currently collaborating with Josh Owen LLC. He was the recipient of a 2007 IDSA Student Merit Award and his work has recently been featured in Innovation magazine. He has served as a guest critic at the University of the Arts Philadelphia and continues to compete in several international design competitions.

Photography: Clint Blowers, Bryce Gibson

Book Design: Marta Kosseva

Author: Josh Owen


PRODUCT 03 CASE STUDY 03

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INDUSTRIAL FACILITY FIELD TRIP

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IDEA DEVELOPMENT

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PROFESSIONAL STUDIO EXPERIENCE

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FINAL REVIEW

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PRODUCTS

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MID-TERM REVIEW


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CASE STUDY PRODUCT 03: DESIGN OF CONTEMPORARY PRODUCTS Fall 2009

The above title refers to the output collected from the third iteration of a course which is now entitled “The Design of Contemporary Products�. The course was developed for the graduate level within the School of Design, in the Integrated Product Design study plan, to serve as a platform for connecting to a larger universitywide initiative to create content which could serve cross-disciplinary interests by brokering relationships between the Wharton School for Business, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the School of Design. Product design is a natural nexus for crossdisciplinary discourse. Product 03 introduced students, with design backgrounds in Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Engineering, to the field of Product Design through a combination of didactic seminars and practical workshops. Capitalizing on product design theory and process, which encourages the integration of engineering and business concerns along with the experience of human interaction and emotive qualities, students were invited to re-think a utilitarian product. Each student conducted his or her own research within a specific object classification and responded with an inventive proposal merging gestural references, typologies, or languages, with a utilitarian service. Using hindsight as a guide to further develop the course from the previous two semesters, we adjusted certain factors to maximize outcomes. For the third iteration of the course, we decided to continue without a thematic overlay and reinforce the strong, philosophical position regarding the state of product design today, namely, that product design should be a user-centric endeavor


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that values performance and thought. In addition, student feedback from the first and second variants of the course lead us to use practicing product designers as critics. Jeff Miller was selected due to his strong record in industry but also because of his ability to meld theoretically based conceptual work with client-based output. Following the format from the previous class, his mentorship was employed for both the mid-term and the final reviews. The students were pleased by the repetition of an outside voice in the critical reviews and the dialog followed the adjustments from the previous semester by continuing to be vested in ‘typical’ product design. We further followed the successes of the previous semester with a continued in-depth analysis of the professional sector by repeating the planned field trips. The first was to Minima, a contemporary furniture shop with an industrial designer manager who lectured about production realities that have an impact on products. The second field trip was to my professional offices, enabling the students to have a first-hand look at an independent designer’s approach. As with the previous iterations of the class, we continued a dedicated focus on professional communication. Great care was given to information design and scenario-based product photography. Given that a critical mass of output had been generated by this time, the decision was also made to begin to choose a variety of channels to publish the results of the courses. This book is a part of that initiative.


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INDUSTRIAL FACILITY FIELD TRIP

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students visit Minima, in Old City Philadelphia to learn about product design and get inspired


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IDEA DEVELOPMENT

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from sketch to 3D model, students build prototypes of their designs


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students experiment with different forms and materials to create their final designs


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MID-TERM REVIEW

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during mid term review, students receive feedback as to how to further improve their designs


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PROFESSIONAL STUDIO EXPERIENCE

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students visited Josh Owen’s studio for a lecture as well as to get a first hand experience as to how a independent designer works


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FINAL REVIEW

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the remix

seat. hold. store. + more.

The remix is a multi-functional furniture unit inspired by the recombination of audio tracks in the music industry. It was formulated through the hybridization of scales, proportions + functions of common household furnitures into a single form. By simply changing the orientation of the remix, a wide variety of functions become possible. The remix's flexibility of use makes it ideal for many living situations. Its function can change on a day to day basis or over long periods of time. It can be used in any room of a house or aid in multiple activities in small studio apartments. Multiple units can be combined for use in the same function or as separate entities used simultaneously. Use it as a chair for extra dinner guests. Use it as a coffee table or a side table that slides over your sofa. Use it as a bedside table that has both shelf and storage. Use it as a small storage unit in an office or den. Combine multiples into a bench, shelving or tables. Use it how you want, when you

want.

Emaan Farhood the remix

The remix is a multi-functional furniture unit inspired by the recombination of audio tracks in the music industry. It was formulated through the hybridization of scales, proportions + functions of common household furniture into a single form. By simply changing the orientation of the remix, a wide variety of functions become possible. The remix’s flexibility of use makes it ideal for many living situations. Its function can change on a day to day basis or over long periods of time. It can be used in any room of a house or aid in multiple activities in small studio apartments. Multiple units can be combined for use in the same function or as separate entities used simultaneously. Use it as a chair for extra dinner guests. Use it as a coffee table or a side table that slides over your sofa. Use it as a bedside table that has both shelf and storage. Use it as a small storage unit in an office or den. Combine multiples into a bench, shelving or tables. Use it how you want, when you want.

The Remix Emaan Farhoud  |  2 of 3


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Alex Lee shut

The introduction of electronic controls to objects replaced the language already embedded in manmade products, with interfaces organized instead around the circuit board. The consequence was an array of buttons, the need to label them, and manuals to decrypt the menus and functions hidden behind these buttons. Designers in the 1980’s began to question these new interfaces with objects that communicated their use and control more overtly. This radio embeds the functions of buttons, switches, and dials directly in to the form. The language of gestures used to operate the radio becomes legible in the manipulation between the radio’s two halves.


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Alison Mora Timeline Alarm Clock

The Timeline Alarm Clock is an alarm clock that displays time linearly and has two pins to set two alarms: one to remind them to go to sleep and one to wake up. By posing time as a time line or a journey, the user sets the asleep point and the wake up point as events along the journey of the day. This display of information is more closely tied to college student’s relationship with time than a clock that shows the exact numerical time. The Timeline Alarm Cock treats time as a definitive resource that the user physically sets how they want to distribute their time, allowing them to see how much of their resource they have used up, how much they have left, and how they have distributed the time they have left between sleep and awake.


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Andrew Haney Grip Cup

Coffee is the second most consumed beverage in the world. It is second only to water. With this in mind I set out to design a product that is both simple and necessary to the procedure of consuming this most consumed beverage. The Grip Coup offers multiple comfortable grips and allows for the possibility of multiple uses to cut down on resources consumed in this product’s typical over-production.


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stoo(L)amp

Kristen Smith | 2 of 3

Kristen Smith stoo(L)amp

In order to provide extra seating for guests during parties or visits, the stoo(L)amp takes advantage of the formal similarities inherent in the stool and the standard lampshade. By slicing through the standard truncated cone shape of the lampshade (1), a natural affinity for hanging or sitting against the wall is achieved (2). Perfect for its stored state, this slice also gives directionality and added comfort to sitting in the stool. The handle for moving the stoolamp also serves a double function, providing a notch for hanging while in use as a lamp (3).


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Dris Hassar Reveil des Sens

Reveil des Sens is an innovative device that focuses on “Smell” and “Touch” to promote a progressive and natural waking up experience. The device enables users to customize their waking up experience by selecting not one not only the desired time but also the desired scent (orange,lavender, coffee, bacon, etc...) to wake up to. The experience starts with an olfactory sensation that diffuses the desired scent throughout the head of the device, a fan is then used to direct the airflow and scent towards the user and create a tactile sensation. This way, the user will already partially if not completely awake when the disruptive sound of his traditional alarm clock or cell phone goes on. Think of this device is a complementary tool to the more traditional “alarm clocks” and technologies that focus exclusively on sound and hearing, and that usually create a disruptive and stressful waking up experience.


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Rebecca Popowski Wrap

The Wrap bookshelf uses two simple components - a stacking shelf module and a linear fabric wrap - to create varied measures of visual and physical access to its contents. Unlike typical methods of concealing shelved objects, such as drawers and doors, the wrap allows a full, adjustable spectrum of accessibility as well as an appealing user interface. The soft, translucent, elastic wrap hides contents partially or fully from view, while allowing easy access. The stacking cubes can be shifted or twisted out of line in order to peal the fabric back and to more prominently display contents. The bookshelf is highly customizable and flexible with respect to appearance, utility and dimension.


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Jeff Palitsch (rE)ARTH

(rE)ARTH is a burial alternative for the design minded and eco-conscious individual. Rather than continuing to waste space and resources while polluting our land and air (rE)ARTH seeks not to simply create a harmless product but to actually create something that is helpful to the earth: (rE)ARTH is a rebirth for the ideals of the departed. The vessel takes the form of a child’s understanding of a house and serves as a home for the departed. Composed of reclaimed lumber and cast paper panels impregnated with valuable nutrients and seeds (rE)ARTH soothes the pain of passing with the exuberance of a nal meaningful act. As the vessel breaks down it enriches the earth and leaves behind a beautiful, natural reminder of the departed.


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Hyunsoo Kim My Signature Cup

When there are group of people gathered in one place. Let say they drink something, but no matter what they drink, there is always high possibility that the cups can be mixed each other and hard to track which one belongs to whom. Or you have to keep your eyes on the cups all the time until you leave that place. With this in mind, I questioned myself what could be the simple and fun solution to let the users give their signature onto the cups in order to keep tracking them. Upon I found very useful to use the take-outcup cap which has the buttons on top; to push the buttons to verify what it contains inside. If the cup itself has the bumps (buttons) on the surface, it can be fun as bubble wrap to play around with and fun to touch the smooth bumpy surface. And at the same time it can give the insulation effect and can protect your hands from the hot beverages.


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Yiquin Wang Grocery Bag Holder

The grocery bag holder takes the place of a trash can. It can be taken down into thin pieces and easily packed up in baggage. The product is designed for students, who do not have their own house, and keep on moving somewhere else after a few years. No matter where one lives, a trash can is something necessary. And we need more than one because kitchens, bathrooms, and bedrooms all need it. Students often live in school dorms and apartments. Depending on how long the program they are in, they always end up moving somewhere else within one to five years, and the new place is still not their permanent home. When students move, a lot of trash cans are discarded because they cannot be put into baggage as other things. It is not only a waste of money, but is also a waste of time and energy to buy new ones and carry them to the new place that we end up living. When living somewhere nonpermanently, do we really need a trash can? Since people are used to throw trash into bags instead of directly into trash cans, all that we need is something that can hold the bags. And we get a lot of bags every time we go shopping, which usually take the place of trash bags at home.


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Matthew Owens virtual Presence

Virtual Proximity is a social information system in which individuals are invited to share their current state of mind and otherwise engage with others through linked and geographically aware tokens.


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Chen Qi Folding Vase

Folding Vase challenges the notion that vase as a space container always takes up space. Coming from folding a piece of silicone rubber and attaching each fold with hook and loop which allows repeatedly attaching and detaching, this product can be a vase when you need it as well as a sheet when you unfold it. In this way, you can easily take it with you when travelling or moving, you can also put ten of them in the drawer in case of flower explosion.


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