A sensorial and playful examination of downtime

by Valerie Notter de Rabanal

#StudioIndustrialDesign #Master-Thesis

«Pause!» – the adventure: active or unhurried, alone or in a group, unaware or knowingly – every break, every pause is different. Facing many different needs, varying environmental conditions and seemingly endless possibilities in recreational activites, the difficulty for many is the setting of priorities and learning to appreciate "fallow time".

Analyzing the phenomenon «Pause!» shows its surprising complex composition. Breaks are notional undetermined, though an everyday occurrence very diverse and different, according to the individual need. Innumerable offers are on market as how to spend the precious little time, to fill the gaps, to doodle away. This suggests that the final result of the project should not be another instrument for the leisure industry. Rather, a playful process of reflection is desired.

Valerie Notter, in her role as a product designer, takes on the challenge to develop a collection of different objects that serve as statements and push and promote self-perception and reflectivity. The objects stimulate to quest for a different handling of one's time: They let the user experience changes and, as ritual objects – of sorts – celebrate the time-in-between. Their minimalistic design offers space for contemplation and interpretation.


Prof. Werner Baumhakl

, Studio Industrial Design

Prof. Dr. Claude Enderle

, Institute Interior Design and Scenography

Lukas Scherrer

, Founder SHIBULERU Design