Naturalness - The harmonious balance between craft and design

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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Master’s Programme in Interior Architecture
This thesis explores the harmonious coexistence of the fields of craft and design. “Naturalness” suggests initiating a design project from a subjective method from the craft’s perspective suggesting the designer act as the maker. The notion aims to restore the significance of craftmanship in design and to bring up the intrinsic value of materiality through craft. The definition of “Naturalness” is the quality of being natural or the resemblance between a representation and the object it represents. I found the term is associated with the lifestyle in the Finnish summer cottage and the spirit of craftsmanship. A field study was conducted in the Finnish summer cottages through observations. Rural living reveals the desire for alternate lifestyles outside of the city. The architecture, activities, collection of objects and nature found in the cottage area was documented as part of the research. During two of the visits, I started on-site workshops for craft practice. The intuition of crafts contributes to the cottage environment. The phenomenon found in the cottage was subsequently interpreted and used as inspiration for the development of the final work. In addition, research was carried out to comprehend the relationship between the field of craftsmanship and design, as well as the effects of materiality and the human sense of craftsmanship. This project, which straddles the line between design and craft, employs a practice-led approach in which creative development is guided by craft-oriented thought. The research information inspired the creation of the final work entitled Wood Pleats. A unique brushing method was investigated and employed on the surface of the wood to create a novel texture. The body of the works consists of two wooden vases, a side table, and a chair that share the same surface treatment. They disclose the true nature of wood in its materiality in cooperation with the cottage culture. Naturalness consciousness provides an alternate perspective from which to see and work. The thesis intends to emphasise the significance of craftsmanship in design and to suggest that the designer works as the maker, enabling the creator to have a more intimate relationship with their artistic creations. To expand the concept of Naturalness, with the hope that it will eventually become a movement that diversifies the notion of design and has positive effects not limit on the design community but also on our living environment and society.
Rygalik, Tomek
Thesis advisor
Rygalik, Tomek
naturalness, craft, design, balance, materiality, craftsmanship, Finnish summer cottage, wood
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