This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Design Guidelines for designing Ming Dynasty Style furniture suited for Modern life




Li, Jing

Type of Degree

Master's Thesis


School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture


Chinese traditional furniture has an extremely long history, which can be traced back to 5000 years ago. Because of development of the society, economy and the advanced technology, Ming dynasty furniture achieved greatness, and became the well-known golden age of traditional furniture. (Ye,Wang,2003). Chinese traditional furniture not only represent the highest level of manufacturing technique, but also stands for the quintessence of Chinese traditional culture. From this reason, Ming Dynasty furniture has a substantial value in aesthetic, structure, manufacturing technique, and material selection, for the younger generations to learn from. Unfortunately, this peak did not continue very long. Currently, the younger generation of Chinese not only did not inherit the traditional Chinese furniture but also are losing the ability to appreciate the beauty of it. Moreover, based on the product function theory traditional Chinese furniture cannot satisfy the current society. As a result, certain changes need to be made in order to help the traditional Chinese furniture fit in the current market, and meet the needs of modern life. As an Industrial Design thesis, this research was conducted to study the furniture design from the aspects of Ming Dynasty style and modern society requirements with a focus on the ability of Ming Dynasty furniture to transmit traditional Chinese aesthetics to modern society requirements. For the cultural heritage, Ming Dynasty furniture was chosen as an inspiration for this study. The emphasis of this study was to establish a guideline of all kinds of Ming Dynasty Furniture and apply this guideline to modern furniture design. The expectation is that these design guidelines will help designers build a furniture with Ming Dynasty furniture style while meeting the needs of modern life, and thus continue the cultural heritage of Chinese traditional culture. This research acts as the foundation for future study that focuses on traditional Chinses culture.