Material Semiotics of Form Giving: The Case of the Electric Turkish Coffee Pot

Creative Commons License

Kaygan H.

DESIGN ISSUES, vol.32, pp.78-90, 2016 (AHCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 32
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • Doi Number: 10.1162/desi_a_00384
  • Journal Name: DESIGN ISSUES
  • Journal Indexes: Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.78-90
  • Keywords: material semiotics, actor-network theory, affordance, product form, form giving, designer-client relationship, tradition, national style, Turkey, DESIGN, TECHNOLOGY
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The article discusses material semiotics as a valuable framework for the analysis of design processes, and focuses on form giving practices. For this purpose, the design processes of electric Turkish coffee pots are studied through interviews and document analyses. It is argued that neither form giving nor product form can be considered to be singular or stable throughout a design process, and that semantic and material relations that are built and maintained around the product form need to be traced for a fuller understanding.