Fish Aware: Textile Design as an Environmental Intervention. How textile design can be used as a medium to raise awareness of overfishing; and influence the pattern of fish consumption.

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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Degree Programme in Textile Art and Design
Tekstiilitaiteen koulutusohjelma
This thesis is a cooperation between WWF Finland and Makia Clothing, to create textile print designs within in a campaign context. The study specifically addresses the issue of overfishing, with the purpose to raise awareness and better sustainable practices within consumers and companies. Unsustainability has brought design and designers to a position where they have to think and design with an uncertain future in mind. There is no steady route to success or path to follow. Economic uncertainty has changed the frame work of design positions in business, and limitations in natural resources mean designers are facing many challenges. However, on the up-side it has opened design to new ideas and ways of working; in essence the rule book has been thrown out and replaced with a development of design that is sensitive to nature and its surroundings. In the design world, values are becoming increasingly acknowledged and used as a method for bringing about sustainable change. Looking at the different theories of values this thesis attempts to address one of the largest issues in sustainability today, and at how textile print design can be used as a medium to raise awareness of overfishing and influence sustainable behavior. The campaign and designs is released in May 2013, which means it is not possible to provide details of the results. However, the project has shown that to influence a sizeable industry towards sustainable change is a difficult and complex procedure. This thesis focused on the consumer and took a bottom-up approach, yet ideally there needs to be strategies that incorporate the views and values of many different stakeholders at the same time to be able to create any effective long term sustainable behavioural change. As a designer this type of cooperation is key in developing sustainable change, and it’s not something that can be done on your own.
Kääriäinen, Pirjo
Textile Print Design, Sustainability, raising awareness, change, values, cooperation