Concept Development: Conceptual Formal Distinctions and Appropriation

Lynne has given me feedback on my project 3 proposal, stating that she likes the tactile approach I plan to take with the assignment, though she is worried that the items will all feel the same.

Good point.

I was questioning whether or not to do this in the first place. It seems a little obvious and overdone.

Time to get back to the drawing board!

About appropriation… we talked about this crazy, little word in class yesterday. And oddly enough, my friend Mel and I discussed this word last Friday.

We came to the conclusion that the line of right or wrong is so grey that can never be defined.

This leads to my next puzzle: creating a design around Navajo Blankets for my surface design class. Yikes. This is a delicate area. Here are some articles on how Urban Outfitters crossed the line…

Navajo Nation Sues Urban Outfitters Over The 'Navajo Hipster Panty'

Jezebel: Navajo Nation Sues Urban Outfitters Over The “Navajo Hipster Panty”

Native Appropriations: Urban Outfitters is Obsessed with Navajos

and this one is kind of goofy:

The Globe and Mail: Urban Outfitters’ “Navajo hipster panty” enrages Native Americans

This is what is written in bold at the end of the article: “Would you wear faux-Navajo or is there something left to be said for authenticity?”

Um… “faux-Navajo?” I think that is a poor description. There is a large difference between something that uses the name “Navajo” illegally vs. something that is a copy of a Navajo design vs. something that is Navajo inspired. (And sometimes items can fall under more than one of those categories.) The safest bet for designers and retailers: inspiration only.


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