The un-designability of the virtual
Drawing on Gilles Deleuze (1991), this chapter investigates the virtual as what problematizes the possible by inserting contingency in the process of emergence of the new. The tension between the virtual as what is uniquely placed to engender true innovation, and its aleatory and unforeseeable nature mirrors the tension existing in design between form-making and the need to acknowledge contingency. In embracing the un-designability of the virtual, design is called to take contingency and material variability as forces impinging on the process of emergence of the new. The chapter puts forward a new model for design research that shifts from problem-solving to problem-finding and is predicated on the undesigned at the core of design itself. This points to a further shift: the role of designer from creator to facilitator, teasing form out of the formless, engaged with the manifold forces expressed through material variation.