Products as Poetry: A Case Study of the Sun-Crow Teapot Design Based on Traditional Chinese Poetic Aesthetics

Chi-Chang Lu
Crafts and Design Department, National Taiwan University of Arts, Taiwan

Po-Hsien Lin
Graduate School of Creative Industry Design, National Taiwan University of Arts, Taiwan

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Ingår i: KEER2014. Proceedings of the 5th Kanesi Engineering and Emotion Research; International Conference; Linköping; Sweden; June 11-13

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 100:29, s. 375-384

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Publicerad: 2014-06-11

ISBN: 978-91-7519-276-5

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


The concept of emotional design has become the main focus in the current trend of perceptual consumption. After reviewing the historical development of Eastern and Western art; we determined that traditional Chinese art emphasizes subjective expression. Moreover; classical Chinese aesthetics favor poetics; whereas classical Western aesthetics focus on rationalism. Poetics are image based; and personal perceptions are used to analyze and understand external objects. These perceptions are expressed implicitly through symbols or metaphors. Classical Chinese poetic aesthetic theory is based on nearly 2;000 years of history and; thus; comprises a myriad of valuable ideas. The artist of the sun-crow teapot has extensive experience researching and creating Chinese art; and drew on these experiences and knowledge to craft the teapot. However; the purpose of the design was to achieve Donald A. Norman’s reflective level of emotional design. In addition; the teapot was designed to exhibit traditional Oriental charm while conforming to modern style aesthetics. Design strategies inspired by traditional Chinese aesthetics include the concept that humans are an integral part of nature; wonder derived from opposing similarities and dissimilarities; the theory of the emptiness-solidity relationship; the concept of meaning that is retained when images are forgotten. To modernize the teapot; the design strategy was derived from the theories of Cezanne. Thus; the teapot was crafted using both spherical and cylindrical shapes to create a contemporary and fashionable abstract minimalist style. Case evaluation results indicate that a poetic design based on traditional Chinese artistic techniques can be implemented.


Chinese Classical Aesthetics; Emotional Design; Poetic Design; Bionic Design; Product Design.


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