Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Concept vs Idea

How is a concept different than an idea? Is it possible to define a difference between the two?

An idea for the example above might be “I have an idea to make a series of unconventional packages to make people think” The concept is further developed by assembling disparate visual and verbal elements and combining them in a new way to create a message that is sum total of the individual parts. The“ scarcity goods collection” packages individual, community and environmental imbalances. Collectively these packages read as a cry for collective healing. An empty bottle that we associate with a drugstore product labeled “symptom remover” becomes a remedy for perhaps some of the ills of the body, environment, or even culture. The concept is complex in its interpretation, but simple in its solution. FLOWmarket packages are designed by the danish designer Mads Hagstrøm.

A title, an artist's signature and a museum context elevate Duchamp's “fountain” to the status of a work of art. A found object declares itself as a work of art because it combines the nomenclature found in art museums and is placed on exhibition.

A concept transcends the physical object to create a mental image or idea.

In “Brutus Killed Caesar”, an artist‘s book by John Baldessari, the title helps to direct the interpretation of events. In the book two men face each other separated by an object. The title implies the object is a murder weapon, Brutus is on the left, and Caesar on the right. As the middle pages are turned different objects appear that we understand to be weapons, like a knife or gun. As the book progresses the objects become more absurd and we imagine murder committed with a roll of packing tape or a potted plan. This is a good example of how the context or juxtaposition of images and words shape the message.

The watch series “ Waste not a Moment” designed by Tibor Kalman communicate more than just the time. By emphasizing 5 o'clock on a watch, we interpret an aspect of time rather than just the time of day.

David Trujillo presents a concept for packaging a remedy for a phobia about germs:
Disposable anti-human wipes that talks about taboos, genocides, rituals, myths, and social stigmas overall. Small graphic elements support the concept: the registration mark on the flap resembles a shooting target icon while the red fingerprint symbolizes marks left by the user.

Thank you David and Crissy for bringing the Flowmarket, and Fountain to the class discussion.

1 comment:

poly jonston said...

I’d say they are different steps to the same process. An idea is a flash of creativity or originality, and a concept is a more full understanding of its execution. I wouldn’t say there’s any line between one and the other, except that a concept based on an idea, and requires thoughtfulness and care as to how you want it [your concept] to be perceived/come across.