Assignment 1 | Integrative Studio 2 #2

What are the patterns, trends and commonalities evolving from your observations?

The most common brand seen is the name of our university “The New School”. With its eye-catching font and color, the name seems to have become a brand that is stamped on every item being sold even if it is not school merchandise. Most of the trends encountered are in regards to student fashion, lifestyle and events. Every flyer, poster, food package, etc is designed in a youthful way to attract students. On reading the text, it can be seen that they are made to meet students’ needs either by providing services, job opportunities, food or other such necessities. Another common trend that has evolved from my observations is the concept of sustainability. With the intstitution’s encouragement and support of environment-friendly attitudes, students are trying to incorporate this trend into their work.

What kinds of structures/realities allow for these patterns and trends? In other words, what causes and allows these patterns and trends to exist?

Students especially, purchase school merchandise to blend in with the school, buy cafeteria food, use brands typically advertised by the school like “Apple” to stay with the trends, and respond to the various informative brochures and flyers. With the constant provision of infromation to them, students are bound to be affected by the on-going trends. Advertisements are everywhere and people can’t miss them even if they want to.   

What is the impact of these patterns?  (Which are intended and which are unintentional?)                 

Some of these patterns lead to the formation of communities within the student population, which may be intentional. However, this can also unintentionally cause classism. For example, the school advertises trips being conducted for students that cost exorbitant amounts. Students unable to afford such trips may feel neglected, especially if their counterparts on the other hand are able to attend them. Similarly, certain higher priced brands may not be owned by every student. All of us come from different socio-economic and cultural backgrounds. Everyone cannot have the same lifestyle or similar taste. Another significant and puproseful impact of these patterns is the promotion of resources or brands provided by the university.

The strongest or most vulnerable part of this system of fashion sustainability is the responsibility of the consumer to recycle the garment. The wearer of the particular garment must be aware of the enormous waste created by fashion and how important it is to reuse and rewear fabrics. There are several fashion recycling organizations in the nation, but they highly depend on the contribution of customers by handing in old and worn-out clothes. With the absence of this node, the system of fashion sustainability is interrupted.

Another crucial node of this system is the starting point which involves farmers growing the necessary crops. Without the crops, there would be no fibres, no fabrics and thus no garments. The knowledge of the entire process is also an ecouragement for students to recycle clothes.

Assignment 1 | Integrative Studio 2 #1

System of Buying Something Online

 

What are the patterns, trends and commonalities evolving from your observations?

The most common brand seen is the name of our university “The New School”. With its eye-catching font and color, the name seems to have become a brand that is stamped on every item being sold even if it is not school merchandise. Most of the trends encountered are in regards to student fashion, lifestyle and events. Every flyer, poster, food package, etc is designed in a youthful way to attract students. On reading the text, it can be seen that they are made to meet students’ needs either by providing services, job opportunities, food or other such necessities.

What kinds of structures/realities allow for these patterns and trends? In other words, what causes and allows these patterns and trends to exist?

The fact that students, faculty, staff and even visitors actually pay attention to these trends by following them plays a big factor in allowing them to exist. Students especially, purchase school merchandise to blend with the school, buy cafeteria food, use brands typically advertised by the school like “Apple” to stay with the on-going trend, and respond to the various informative brochures and flyers.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

What is the impact of these patterns?  (Which are intended and which are unintentional?)                 

Some of these patterns lead to formation of communities within the student population, which may be intentional. However, this can also unintentionally cause classism. For example, the school advertises trips being conducted for students that cost exorbitant amounts. Students unable to afford such trips may feel neglected, especially if their counterparts on the other hand are able to attend them. Similarly, certain higher priced brands may not be owned by every student. Another significant and definitely intentional impact of these patterns is the promotion of resources or brands provided by the university.

 

System of Making a Dress

 

Ghunghat (Indian Veil) | Space/Materiality Fall’18

With “Cultural Body Extension” as one of my topics for Space/Materiality, I created a geometric version of an Indian wedding veil using wood, wire and sheer fabric. I had an excellent learning experience throughout the process of creating this piece. I had no idea how to straighten wire or cut wood circularly. As I expanded my techniques, I realized how thoroughly I enjoyed making this veil. I want to continue exploring new techniques with different materials, especially in the field of fashion. Also, since this project was related to my culture I felt a greater connection with it than with the others. I love and greatly respect the richness of Indian culture, and hope to continue being inspired by it.

Assignment 1 | Integrative Seminar 2

“The Branding of Learning” from Naomi Klein’s No Logo (1999)

“They are fighting for their brands to become not the add-on but the subject of education, not an elective but the core curriculum.”

“Sums that make the coaches’ salaries look like tokens of appreciation.”

“Public school teachers are desperate for materials that will excite the kids.”

“The more campuses act and look like malls, the more students behave like consumers.”

“We believe students are savvy enough to discern between educational content and marketing materials.”

“So there they all were, fighting about women’s studies and the latest backlash book while their campuses were being sold out from under their feet.”

  1. Why did brands use the bargain basement strategy for students?
  2. Did they in a way use students as their marketing advisors?
  3. What is it about brands that entrances schools and universities?

 

 

 

 

Convenience Purchases –

Edamame – $4.29

Honest Cranberry Lemonade – $2.99

Grilled Cheese – $8.99

Justin’s Organic dark chocolate Peanut Butter Cups – $1.99

Destination Purchase –

Parsons Hoodie – $42

From the above examples, it can be seen that destination purchases are more expensive. They are also more time-consuming because of the extra effort required in going to the desired store or counter. Although the convenience purchases seem cheaper in comparison to the other, they are priced relatively higher than in markets outside of the New School.

 

Bridge 4 (Intro to Research) | Urban Avatar

Assignment: Using your assigned street as a focus, craft a creative, braided essay that explores the full dimensionality of its past and present by weaving scholarly investigation; personal narrative and observation; creative analysis; cultural association; and specific thinking-on-the-page. With your group, explore the street in person. Then, explore the street through research in different contexts. Ask yourself: how might these different contexts connect? Be creative and lyrical. Ultimately, attempt to synthesize your research into some kind of point, or set of points. Look to Georges Perec’s An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Paris, McPhee’s “The Search for Marvin Gardens” and Biss’s “Time and Distance Overcome” for models. In order to develop your thinking, the essay should use detailed, first-person observation coupled with a variety of kinds of authoritative and scholarly research, cited with footnotes that correspond to the sources listed in the annotated bibliography.

Annotated Bibliography

Each group will create ONE, SHARED standard, Chicago annotated bibliography with entries for every work used in the above essay, as well as works that you consulted for general reference that may not have been directly cited.

Requirements:

  • At least two (2) scholarly sources.
  • At least four (4) non-scholarly but authoritative sources.
  • Variety of kinds of sources that address different facets of street.

Drafts:


Finals:


Reflection: Being my first ever research-based essay, Bridge 4 was an amazing learning experience. I am now super interested in doing deeper research on different parts of New York City. The peer critique and one-on-one critique with Professor Wilson were of tremendous help. They helped me organize and connect my essay in a more understandable manner. Overall, this essay helped me grow the most.

Bridge 5 (Reflection & Moving On) | Final Course Reflection

Bridge 5 (Reflection & Moving On): Final Course Reflection

 

  • Which assignments helped you to grow and in what specific ways? What interests were sparked? List at least two.

The last two assignments: Bridge 3 (Multiple Perspectives) – Fashion Avatar and Bridge 4 (Intro to Research) – Urban Avatar were the most significant ones for me throughout the semester. While working on Studio’s Bridge 3, my group members and I put in a lot of effort and thought into what kind of garment we wanted to create. Our final outcome: a sari, was a product of a lot of hard work, creative conflicts and newly learned skills. This project helped me grow in uncountable ways. I learned techniques with different materials like fabric, wire and metal. It made me realize how much my interests lean towards fashion. On the other hand, in Seminar, I produced a three-page essay on the significance of red lipstick. I never thought I’d be able to do that. This Bridge was successful in making me widen my perspectives. Lastly Bridge 4’s research element, being a completely new concept for me, was challenging and interesting. My group was assigned Worth Street in Lower Manhattan. After all our thorough research, I can give anybody a pretty holistic tour of Worth Street.

 

  • Which early projects seem connected to your research project?

Our Bridge 2 (Peer to Peer) – Partner Profile seems connected to our research project in the way that we conducted interviews for Seminar and created models depicting action verbs for Studio. We had to delve into our partners’ minds to be able to write a profile on him/her. Making 10 final structures together after 4 iterations of each, set us on the path of discovering new facts and skills.

  • Where were there moments of synchronicity between Seminar and Studio, when your work seemed truly integrated?

I felt true synchronicity between Seminar and Studio during the process of Bridge 3 (Multiple Perspectives) – Fashion Avatar. I believe that our visit to MoMA’s exhibit Items: Is Fashion Modern? is responsible for producing that feeling in me. The visit provided a good base for the construction of our garment as well as essay.

  • Throughout the semester, how has your writing ability changed? Cite some examples to illustrate your point.

Coming from India, Chicago Writing Style was a foreign concept to me at first. In the course of these fifteen weeks, my knowledge of writing, citing sources, and making bibliographies has expanded so much. For example, I didn’t think I would be able to write a 5-7-page research essay on a single street. My Bridge 2 Partner Profile proved to me that I am improving in my ability to portray a person in words and not just color. There is more than a lot of need for improvement but the techniques and skills I have picked up this semester have built a confidence in me for the coming semesters.

  • Throughout the semester, how has your approach to reading progressed? Or how has text changed your work?

Before this semester, I had never annotated any kind of text. After being introduced to the art of annotating I have begun to look at my books and other kinds of texts differently. I am able to engage with them much more than before. I can now have a conversation with the text I read.

  • Throughout the semester, how have your making skills progressed? Include allusions to projects to illustrate your point.

Studio has encouraged me to expand my portfolio of skills to a great extent. Working with numerous materials like wood, fabric, metal, clay, wire, etc. has made me super excited for my future at Parsons. I loved working with wire and fabric for our Bridge 3’s sari. I learned how to create wire structures and embellish them by sewing fabric onto them. This technique has interested me greatly. Using the different labs at Parsons has been such a wonderful and educational experience. I look forward to making the most of these resources in the coming years.

  • Which assignments proved particularly challenging? Why? How did you meet that challenge?

My favorite, Bridge 3 (Multiple Perspectives) – Fashion Avatar was the most challenging assignment. My group members and I had too many ideas and took a long time to come to a common conclusion about what we wanted to create. Fortunately, the three of us got along well and settled on incorporating each of our ideas. We managed to produce a piece that combined all our creative skills as well as our cultures.

  • Which assignment(s) that you completed might you consider a kind of failure? Why? How can you learn from this failure?

Our first Studio group project: Bridge 2 (Peer to Peer) – Partner Profile was an overwhelming assignment since it required us to make 40 structures within two weeks. My partner, Eric Hu and I managed to finish everything on time but our finished products looked rushed. We didn’t spend enough time trying to explore newer materials. Sticking to paper and wire, did not make our project stand out. This failure was a huge help because it prepared me for the next assignments. I realized that I needed to get out of my comfort zone and start using different machinery and materials.

  • Both in your writing and making, do you see common threads or themes? What ideas occurred to you again and again?

Yes, the common theme that I have noticed in my writing and making is the lack of out-of-the-box thinking. I grew up in a place where academics was all about being factually correct. I am slowly letting go of my rigidity and trying to let my creativity flow out freely. The ideas that keep occurring to me are ones that have already been thought of. I want to go beyond that.

  • How can you use what you’ve learned in Integratives this semester and apply it to next semester and to your focus at Parsons?

Since I’m an Integrated Design major, the variety of concepts I have picked up in Studio and Seminar this semester will go a long way with me through the next three and a half years. I love integrating different art forms, materials, and skills into one project. The various Bridge assignments have helped me realize my true interests: Fashion, Product and Communication Design. As I mentioned earlier, using the labs and resources at Parsons this semester has boosted me for Spring 2018.

  • What questions or interests sparked this semester would you like to pursue in more detail next semester?

Having done Bridge 4, I would love to pursue deeper research on different parts of New York City. Although citing sources may be a pain at times, the research aspect makes up for it. I am also interested in using writing and making together in some way.