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Title: Visual perception of the designed object
Author: Buchler, Daniela Martins.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3513 0372
Awarding Body: Staffordshire University
Current Institution: Staffordshire University
Date of Award: 2007
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This investigation deals with the issue of visual perception of the designed object, which is relevant in the context of product differentiation particularly in the case where incremental style changes are made to the external shape design of the product. Such cases present a problem regarding the effectiveness of product differentiation, which this research claims is a matter of visual perception. The problem is that in order for product differentiation to be effective, the design changes must be perceptible. Perceptible differentiation is explained as a function of the physical change, i.e. the Oreal¹ difference, and also of the relevance for the observer of that change, i.e. Operceived¹ difference. This study therefore focuses on the comparison between these two aspects of the designed object: the physical design and the perceived design. Literature from both material culture and the so-called indirect account of perception suggest that visual perception is an interpretation of the artefacts that we see. This visual perception is a function of the physical aspect of that object and of the individual cultural background of the observer. However, it was found that between these two accounts there are theoretical incompatibilities which this study claims could be resolved through scholarly investigation of visual perception of the designed object. The thesis takes these two accounts into consideration and proposes a more comprehensive model of visual perception of the designed object that details and extends the material culture understanding of what constitutes the perceptual experience with the designed object and the role of form in that experience. Theory building was conducted across the disciplines of psychology of perception and design. A revised model was proposed for the area of designed object studies, which was informed by Gregory¹s theoretical framework and incorporated empirical explorations into the model development process. The study therefore contributes knowledge to the research area of design, more specifically to cross-disciplinary methods for theory building on visual perception of the designed object.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: CNPq, Brazil
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available