UK Happenings

'FORM: Line-Plane-Solid': An Exhibition of Form-to-Product


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 18, 2016) Defining form may seem like a simple task, that is until you try to find the words to best describe it. Using design instead of words, "FORM: Line-Plane-Solid" explains the concept of form through the act of physical fabrication.

The exhibition, which features 200+ projects by students from the Virginia Tech Form Studio (2011-2014), will be on display through Nov. 30, at the Downtown Arts Center. The free public lecture and reception is 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 25. Exhibit catalogs are also available for purchase at the center.

According to Mitzi Vernon, dean of the College of Design at the University of Kentucky and a former professor at Virginia Tech, the exhibition responds to a need for new discussion about form within design education. This is especially resonant because the college is verging on the launch of its own product design program and is involved in conversations across campus about shared education in engineering, medicine and design.

“Why should we care about form? If you fly in airplanes, ride in boats or automobiles, if you eat with utensils, if you interface with anything artificial, form is important, perhaps even life-saving, every day,” Dean Vernon said. “The form of our contemporary world, especially the human-made world, is where we spend most of our civilized lives.”

The process of creating in the form studio begins conceptually with raw material and simple prompts. Form evolves to product as the studio, and the exhibit, progresses. From the drawing aspect of the project, which introduces the properties of the hand and how human anatomy extends form, to the solid flowform exercise to the utility of a simple handtool, students learn, in tandem, the importance of human interface and the inherent properties of materials. However the essential emphasis is on form doing the work, not relying exclusively on material properties.

Everything from the actual infrastructure of the exhibit, to the graphics, to the artifacts on display were created by more than 100 students involved in Virginia Tech’s Form Studio. UK College of Design is hosting the exhibit, and the Center for Instructional Development and Educational Research (CIDER) at Virginia Tech is the primary sponsor of the exhibition.

This exhibit is another example of Dean Vernon’s vision of stewardship with the Bluegrass, bridging the conversational divide between design and its impact on our community.

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: #uk4ky #seeblue

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