Harvard Design Magazine no.38 - DO YOU READ ME?
“Do You Read Me?” marks a new direction for Harvard Design Magazine—one that invites “reading” across disciplinary boundaries, and stakes out an expanded arena for architecture and design dialogue.
The question anticipates a response: “Loud and clear!” But it also suggests the possibility for distortion, misinterpretation, or evaporation of the message. This issue is about reading and misreading, and the role of design in streamlining or garbling the exchange between sender and receiver, writer and reader, maker and user. Whether written or rendered, engineered or enacted, both message and messenger are designed, and it is the relation between craft and comprehension that is explored here.
But today, beyond the intentional construction and exchange of messages, we are all constantly “read” as data. While we offer our identities as moldable content and marketing fodder with every click; while our words, wants, and whereabouts are tracked by both “friends” and strangers; we might rethink the appeal of misunderstanding, or inscrutability. “Do You Read Me?” suggests that role of design is not just to construct certitudes, to clarify, but also to enable more nuanced realities to coexist.
Published by Harvard University Graduate School of Design
publication: Spring/Summer 2015
Harvard Design Magazine is a registered tax-exempt nonprofit, published twice yearly by the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.
Relaunched in summer 2014, Harvard Design Magazine probes beyond the established design disciplines to enrich and diversify current discourse. Scholarly, poetic, and visually lush, each issue triggers new interpretations of design’s defining role in today’s culture. Distinguished and unexpected voices from the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning meet those from the realms of art, science, literature, and beyond. A space for dialogue, speculation, and surprise: Harvard Design Magazine opens a door onto the applied device of design, and the people, places, and politics it engages.