This paper attempts to illustrate the importance of the conceptual initiative in the design process and how, through the development of a poetic narrative, it can inform the process of creative design andmanufacture. The argument outlined proposes the adoption of a poetic narrative as a mechanism for defining and clarifying the designersi intention with the use of metaphorical associations advocated as ameans of exploiting our innate ability for intuitive extrapolation. Our approach gives emphasis to the conceptual corollary or intellectual process that underpins all considered design work and challenges the traditionally accepted methods of project development where this phase of the process is seen as having a pre-prescribed beginning and end. The paper is also intended as a statement of intent that celebrates the unique nature of our interdisciplinary working practices and, as a contextualisingdocument that posits a realistic and contemporary vision for the future of collaborative endeavours. We illustrate how, through the adherence to a philosophy of creative realism and by the establishment of legitimate, ephemeral collectives, we can effectively instigate and address opportunities in many areas at any given time. In the paper we actively promote an expansive and creative engagement with the dynamics of project inception, development and control as a means of realising our collective aspirations and of ensuring project ownership in the widest sense. The paper discusses creatively critical architectural and new media projects that attempt to subvert a number of modern orthodoxies bysupplanting them with an affective internal logic
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