Rong Chen


Dao has been accumulated for centuries and still remains strong and pertinent to the world today. It is a complex and intriguing philosophy that has many branches and colors. This paper is an analysis of the similarities and differences between the principles held in Daoism and Graphic Design. It is also an interpretation from my personal understanding of both. The concepts derived from my research are presented through several examples, which included the following design principles: Unity, Nature and Wu Wei. The purpose of this thesis is to serve as a bridge, which links concepts of graphic design with Daoism. This project visualizes the main text of Daosim--Daodejing-- and makes this classic literature easier to understand, and to applies the insights form Daoist philosophy to graphic design in order to find new levels of abundance in design solutions. This will allow for young designers to experience the essence of Daosim and experience a new way to approach the design process and understand the potential of good design. This thesis is formulated especially for those western graphic designers new to the field to experience the essence of Dao and apply it to visual communication solutions. So this thesis is formulated especially for those Western graphic beginners to help them experience the essence of Dao and apply it to graphic designs. This thesis supports the premise that Ancient Eastern wisdom and Western thought can meet together to break out of old patterns of thinking and behavior to create a new view of design principles and design thinking. Once graphic designers create their own design philosophy, it can help them to create more powerful and effective visual communications. During this learning process, designers may even have a view and attitude of their life. Designers will find their "Dao" around them and find their enlightenments.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Graphic arts--Philosophy; Visual communication--Philosophy; Taoism; Taoist art

Publication Date


Document Type


Department, Program, or Center

School of Design (CIAS)


Frear, Lorrie

Advisor/Committee Member

Schroeder, Brian


Note: imported from RIT’s Digital Media Library running on DSpace to RIT Scholar Works. Physical copy available through RIT's The Wallace Library at: NC997 .C446 2011


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