You Say Komorebi, I Say NeidbauVootie (1482 pencils) | Fri, 2012-08-24 08:04
The Chilean biologists and philosophers Francisco Varela and Humberto Maturana popularized the notion that as humans we "live in language." From this perspective we inhabit a world built of words, the superstructure of which is largely invisible to us. Far from being universal, language is intensely cultural and blindness to this is at the root of many a misunderstanding. The domain of design is as vulnerable to this as any, with intercultural blindness based on linguistic gaffes being a recurrent phenomena in ad campaigns. Irish designer Fuchsia Macaree recently posted a lighthearted take on this in the form of an alphabet in which each letter illustrates a "lexical gap." For example, the German word neidbau apparently means a building constructed by someone for no other reason than to inconvenience a neighbor! I've included a favorites below.
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