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The Elements of Design

Rediscovering Colours, Textures, Forms and Shapes

Loan Oei, Cecile De Kegel

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A unique sourcebook that explores the elements common to all design: colours, textures, forms and shapes


The bark of a plane tree in Paris; a detail of a cotton towel in Japan; sunset in the Egyptian desert; soil in the Yosemite National Park, California; a tiled floor in Bangkok; a wall in Ferrara; an iron cart wheel in Antwerp... Colours, textures, forms and shapes are the basis of this unique sourcebook that reveals the elements common to all design and literally teaches us how to see.

Hauntingly beautiful and deeply instructive, The Elements of Design surveys our whole environment, natural and manmade, and shows us how it can be defined in terms of basic elements: variable arrangements of dots; lines that are straight, curving, bending or crossing; planes such as rectangles, squares, lozenges, triangles and circles. All these are represented in this book, with telling juxtapositions, in a wide range of materials and techniques, in one sense timeless and universal, in another datable and culturally conditioned. Ever-recurring design elements, they take us to the heart of the creative process: a creative transformation that may involve inspiration or imitation, representation or limitation.

A cult book for artists, designers and craftspeople of all kinds, The Elements of Design is a startling reminder of how the search for something new is a voyage of rediscovery into past and present forms.

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'Captivating and inspiring… stunning photographs… strangely beautiful and mesmerising'
Time Out

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback with flaps

Size: 20.0 x 25.0 cm

Extent: 208 pp

Illustrations: 177

Publication date: 8 April 2002

ISBN: 9780500283394

About the Author

Loan Oei is an exhibitions curator. She also writes and lectures on textiles.

Cecile De Kegel is a graduate in textile design. She teaches weaving and is a passionate photographer.

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