Claudia Chiavazza

Italian research-led practitioner currently based in London. Graduated from Polytechnic of Turin (2019) and Kingston University (2021). She is a visual communicator and researcher with a decentralised position who uses design thinking as a tool of investigation. Thanks to her expertise, she aims to undertake alternative forms of design-actions to reflect and question social, political, and cultural constructs within the realm of cultural, educational, and design-oriented organisations. Download CV (.pdf)

Index

Deconstruction of the Notions of Home

2021

MA Communication Design

Research, Final Major Project

Final Major project at Kingston University addressing 'How are the notions of home constructed by the traveller in the current conditions of Supermodernity?'

Drawing upon a collection of records gathered through quantitative and qualitative research, the project investigates the attributes in play in the construction of the notions of home. Informed by Augé’s definition of the anthropological place, defined as relational, historical, and concerned with identity, combined with autoencoder and generative models used within machine learning to redefine the design process, this body of work analyses and decodes the functional and expressive qualities of the concepts of home.

The research and its findings are presented in the form of an exhaustive map that illustrates the latent connections between theoretical resources as well as a dynamic video, inviting the observer to reflect upon their relationship with the concepts of home by highlighting its everchanging nature. The whole project's development has been documented in a visual summary available for download here.

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Frustrated Writers' Cinema

2021

MA Communication Design

Workshop, Forced connections

Forced Connections was a workshop organised by the tutors of the MA Graphic Design course at Kingston University. It aimed to help students think 'outside the box' and get new ideas. The main prompt was to develop messages and visuals for product, service, or campaign based upon the ‘forced connections’ of a chance group of three words.

Within a three-people team, I worked on the set of words ‘writers-a film to watch in a cinema-tearing’. To facilitate the work, we individually listed the attributes and characteristics of each element. The results were used to fill out a matrix to help identify associations between each factor. We focused on the combination ‘night owl (writers)-dark environment (a film to watch in a cinema)-deconstruction (tearing)’.

The resulting outcome was the creation of a space, accessible during the night, for frustrated writers who are dealing with a creative block and need some type of inspiration. Even though tearing has negative connotations, particularly to creative people who often ‘tear apart their work’, applied to a process of deconstruction of films, we envisioned a new type of movie that could potentially help these distressed practitioners.

Mapping as a research tool

2021

MA Communication Design

Research, Mapping

A small collection of maps and experimental visualisations produced during the Ma Graphic Design course at Kingson University.

[Image 1] The mapping space is reimagined as an infinite grid characterised by a "gravitational field" affected by the various disciplines, events, theories I had or I will encounter in my life. They move into this space following their orbit that symbolises their presence in history -they could reveal themselves briefly or be a constant presence. Each one of them deforms the space to a certain amount referring to my interest/attraction towards that topic. Every broad subject is surrounded by smaller ones that could appear and disappear over time. My path in this field is always straight and towards the future, but at any time I could "rotate" my point of view -even look at the past behind me- or expand it. However, my knowledge can't be omniscient. Hence, my ability to look into the future is inversely proportional to the disciplines investigated. Nevertheless, the progression of my skills could allow me to alter this proportion factor.

[Image 2] Reflective map developed to critically analyse and summarise the work and progress accomplished within a module of the course. Inspired by the diagram "Anatomy of an AI system" (2018) by Crawford and Joler, the map presents a central structure that encourages chronological reading.

[Image 3] A map that re-imagines my final major project proposal's topics as buildings located accordingly to the module's timeline. Each building is constructed considering my interest in the topic -represented by the size of the edifice- and its connection with other topics. For instance, Data Humanism which was the central point of my research is visualised at the bottom of the complex to represent its 'fundamental' role in my research which provided the basis for the development of the other topics -in the upper levels. Additionally, the underlying issues I took into consideration are represented as the 'basement' of these structures. I visualised all topics with a section view to symbolise my explorations of the themes. However, in the case of Urbanism and Architecture -which I hadn't fully explored at that time- they were illustrated with a normal front view that doesn't allow the viewer to 'see inside the building'.

[Image 4] A map that explores possible careers prospects based on the work I liked and people I admired. It refers to my desktop and the multitude of windows I have constantly open. I chose this visual language to depart from the previous maps I created as well as to symbolise and critique the amount of time we spend in front of a computer.

Deconstruction

2021

MA Communication Design

Research, Experimental design

The project visually explores the juxtaposition and misconception of the dominance of high-quality over a poor resolution. Supported by theory and visual explorations, it undertakes processes of concrete and notional deconstruction to provide a response and personal interpretation to Hito Steyerl’s essay ‘In defense of the poor image’ published on e-flux journal in 2009.


  • What is the worst quality a poor image can have to be still recognisable?
  • What are the processes that led to a poor quality?
  • How can an audience be involved in the 'destruction' of the image?
  • On what proportion the image needs to be visible in order to be recognisable?

The result is a graphic constant portrayed as a visual target that investigates the deconstruction of the image quality. The layout and design are inspired by the IEEE Resolution Targets ‘designed to characterize the amount of resolution a camera or display system is able to reproduce from an original image’ [1] In reference to Steyer’s notion of ‘visual bond’, the project invites the audience to actively interact with the work and take part in the ‘deconstruction’ of the image quality.

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Material Foundry

2020

MA Communication Design

Research, Experimental design

The project addresses the materiality of text from the perspective of the material itself. The research interrogates how -or can- a 2D text be reshaped into a 3D form to take on a new meaning. The aim was to investigate which forms and substances a text could be materialized into. To do so, different materials and techniques have been employed in the creation of a new ‘material’ text.

The study was divided into three phases. A first exploration on how other creative figures have tackled materiality in their projects: which materials did they use? Which particular haptic experience was involved? How did they combine visual and tangible elements? While conducting this initial investigation, I observed some common features and methods used by multiple authors, which I took as a model for my practical explorations. Texture, light, shadow, and visibility are some of the key points, whereas deconstruction, layering, and burning are various common approaches. After sketching out some ideas derived from the previous research, I selected the materials I wanted to engage with and identified a text which would be used during my testing. I opted for Noto Sans Buginese because of its approach as a motive which allowed me to focus on the actual material instead of its meaning.

Successively, I undertook practical explorations on the previous points and advanced a personal interpretation of materiality. The conclusion of this stage was a collection of 32 experiments, recorded from the same point of view and background to have visual consistency. I categorised them into small animated sequences that aim to enhance the techniques or materials used. The first sequence collects characters created by grouping variations of the same object. The second one, focuses on the construction and destruction of pixeled or shattered text, whereas the last one arranges all experiments by multiple criteria such as material, process, and visual outcome.

The result is a set of characters applied to visual and poetic forms of representations of isms such as futurism, cubism, and dadaism, inspired by the book ‘The visible word: Experimental Typography and Modern Art, 1909-1923’ (1994) by Johanna Drucker.

Small Thing Big Idea

2020

Personal Project

Editorial design

Personal project of a zine with transcriptions of a TED series called “Small Thing Big Idea” that celebrates the lasting genius of everyday objects, so perfectly designed, that they changed the world around them. The text is accompanied by images and visual elements that complete the reading experience.

The project experiments with typography and layouts which exemplifies the topic of the Talk. The aim was to create a diversified and dynamic design that would attract the reader. Hence, the attention in producing a multitude of layouts on each page to avoid repetitions without losing cohesion.

A Stool Makes History

2020

Personal project

Editorial

"A stool makes history" was a 2013 exhibition from Alvar Aalto Foundation and now collected online on Google Arts and Culture. The project aims to create a visual identity for the exhibition and produce some collateral materials.


The Søborg Chair

2020

Personal project

Poster, Rendering

Model and render of the Søborg Wood base chair, designed by Børge Mogensen and produced by Fredericia.


The project focuses on learning how to model a furniture piece, how to add textures and set the lights of the scene. The chair is produced in Oak black lacquered and Oak standard lacquer and collocated in a simple scene that highlights the materials. In addition, some close-ups provide a better understanding of the chair's material and shapes. The final product is a small flyer which includes some information about the company and celebrates the collection.