‘Fallen Star’

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Defining somethings especially for a designer is impossible. Designers do not define things with a single interpretation, but rather are ambiguous with design. Ambiguous means to have multiple meanings and/or interpretations. By defining something we are limiting ourselves to one concrete idea and do not allow for other approaches. The Stuart Art Collection at UC San Diego is considered ambiguous. The majority of the art pieces found throughout the campus have an ambiguous representation. My favorite piece was ‘Fallen Star’. This piece is essentially a house placed overhanging the top of a building, as if it was placed like this by mistake. Seven floors up, you enter the front garden of the house and see all of San Diego in the background. The garden is covered with colorful flowers and well trimmed greenery. From the outside many positive and happy things come to life. It reminds you of your childhood toys (at least for girls), it reminds you of childhood movies that were full of bright colors and picturesque scenery. Regardless of what it reminds you of, due to its ambiguity it will most likely be a happy memory. Once inside the house it is a different experience. Even just standing at the door looking inside, you immediately feel thrown off. You feel dizzy and unbalanced, I literally stumbled as I entered the house. Everything inside looks straight  but you definitely do not feel straight on your feet. Once you get past being thrown off balance, you begin to feel different. Not physically but rather emotionally. The interior decoration has an old appearance, as if it has been untouched for years. The art pieces and photographs provoked sadness for me and even though there were many people inside the house looking at it, it still felt very empty and cold. I believe these feelings of unbalance both physically and emotionally are part of this piece and were the actual intent. After being inside for about 3 minutes I wanted to get out. I definitely did not feel the same leaving the house than I did when I first saw it. My feelings went from excitement and curiosity to confusion and almost loneliness even thought I was still not able to define what made me feel that way.

As we arrived to UC San Diego for the tour of the campus’s Stuart Collection Art pieces, we were given a pamphlet regarding all the pieces. The main cover page of the pamphlet was of a blue picturesque house with a very colorful garden. Reading through the pamphlet, the one which captured my attention the most was of course the blue picturesque house . The piece is called ‘Fallen Star’. It is essentially a house placed overhanging the top of a building, as if it was placed like this by mistake. Seven floors up, you enter the front garden of the house and see all of San Diego in the background. The garden is covered with colorful flowers and well trimmed greenery. Once in front of the house you can tell it’s placed on an angle rather than straight. From the outside you see its tilted position but you do not think much of it. Once inside the house however it is completely different. Even just standing at the door looking inside, you immediately feel thrown off. You feel dizzy and unbalanced, I literally stumbled as I entered the house. Everything inside looks straight  but you definitely do not feel straight on your feet. Once you get past being thrown off balance, you begin to feel different. Not physically but rather emotionally. The interior decoration has an old appearance, as if it has been untouched for years. The art pieces and photographs provoked sadness for me and even though there were many people inside the house looking at it, it still felt very empty and cold. I believe these feelings of unbalance both physically and emotionally are part of this piece and were the actual intent. After being inside for about 3 minutes I wanted to get out. I definitely did not feel the same leaving the house than I did when I first saw it. My feelings went from excitement and curiosity to confusion and almost loneliness. The piece however is a beautiful one and has a very ambiguous interpretation.

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1 comment
  1. King Cobra said:

    do you think the ambiguity was intentional?
    good grasp of the piece.

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