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Notan: The Dark-Light Principle of Design

Notan: The Dark-Light Principle of Design

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Notan: The Dark-Light Principle of Design

évaluations:
4/5 (8 évaluations)
Longueur:
146 pages
50 minutes
Sortie:
Mar 13, 2012
ISBN:
9780486136301
Format:
Livre

Description

As a guiding principle of Eastern art and design, Notan (a Japanese word meaning dark-light) focuses on the interaction between positive and negative space, a relationship embodied in the ancient symbolism of the Yang and the Yin. In composition, it recognizes the separate but equally important identity of both a shape and its background.
Since their introduction in the West, the intriguing exercises associated with Notan have produced striking results in every branch of Western art and design. This book, by two American artists and teachers who made an intensive study of Notan, was the first basic book on the subject in the West, and it remains one of the definitive texts. Through a series of simple exercises, it places the extraordinary creative resources of Notan easily within the grasp of Western artists and designers.
Clearly and concisely, the authors demonstrate Notan's practical applications in six problems of progressive difficulty — creative exercises that will fascinate artists and designers of every calling and level of expertise. Along with these exercises, the book includes many illustrations of the principle of Notan, among them images as diverse as a sculpture by David Smith, a Samoan tapa cloth, a Museum of Modern Art shopping bag, New England gravestone rubbings, Japanese wrapping paper, a painting by Robert Motherwell, a psychedelic poster, and a carved and dyed Nigerian calabash. Painters, sculptors, potters, jewelry, and textile designers, architects, and interior designers all will discover — or rediscover — in these pages an ancient principle of composition that can help them meet creative challenges with fresh new perspective.

Sortie:
Mar 13, 2012
ISBN:
9780486136301
Format:
Livre

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Meilleures citations

  • In good design like this, the only right solution is one which finds such a union of decoration and form. And when this is discovered, the negative space will no longer be “empty,” but, instead, there will be Notan.

  • In all the arts asymmetrical balance is a great basic principle. In painting it involves complex balances and contrasts of hues and textures; however, in this book we will only be concerned with a balance of black and white.

  • In modern technology decoration is often only added as though it were an afterthought to attract the buyer’s eye. It can often be an unessential feature and in no way united with the form.

  • Become conscious of the movement suggested by the edge or contour of the form.

  • Working within the confines of the shape of the plate, he succeeded in designing a bird that would become an inseparable part of the whole or a design in which the spaces around the bird would assume a form with an exchange of positive and negative.

Aperçu du livre

Notan - Dorr Bothwell

Mayfield

1 NOTAN IN EVERYDAY LIFE

5 Carved and dyed calabash from Oyo, western Nigeria. Although the composition is symmetrical and fixed, the birds seem to be climbing because of the movement implicit in the negative shapes between their feet and the tree.

Notan appears in useful objects such as tools in both a primitive culture as well as in a modern technology. In the latter case, however, the Notan produced is more often a by-product of utility. Scissors (Fig. 79) for instance, have beautiful Notan because they must be designed with spaces to fit the fingers; keys must have holes for chains (Fig. 15), and razor blades must fit into the razor (Fig. 8). The negative space exists in these cases because of the requirements of utility, but is not necessarily an intrinsic element of the design.

Many of the examples of Notan illustrated in this book are taken from folk art. Indeed, the instinctive use of Notan in folk or primitive art is an almost invariable characteristic. The intuitive or folk artist, unlike the formally trained designer in modern society, does not have to be taught to remember the negative or to see it in balance with the positive. He has not been taught to seek to dominate nature or to conquer it; on the contrary, he feels himself a part of nature, and his work reflects that sense of balance.

The primitive and the modern artist also differ in their approach to decoration. In modern technology decoration is often only added as though it were an afterthought to attract the buyer’s eye. It can often be an unessential feature and in no way united with the form. The Pueblo Indian craftsman, however, who decided to decorate the simple dish with a bird (Fig. 13) was very much concerned with the integration of form and decoration. Working within the confines of the shape of the plate, he succeeded in designing a bird that would become an inseparable part of the whole or a design in which the spaces around the bird would assume a form with an exchange of positive and negative. In good design like this, the only right solution is one which finds such a union of decoration and form. And when this is discovered, the negative space will no longer be empty, but, instead, there will be Notan.

The primitive artist also differs from the sophisticated artist in his use of symbolic decoration. In the United States symbolic decoration has practically disappeared except in religious objects and in Pennsylvania Dutch hex signs. Yet the first impulse of the primitive artist is to use symbols. Because symbolism dictates further restrictions in both the decoration and the form of the object, the resulting design often involves a very good exchange of

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