THEME Teoria e Memória

THEME is formed with members whose investigations have as their main focus the history of Portuguese design; the phenomenology and epistemology of the Image and perception; design education and the study of Intangible culture

Between 2013-2017 the group:

a) Participated in two applications to the call H2020 “Work Programme: Europe in a Changing World” (2015) and “Understanding Europe: Promoting the European” (2017) with international partners. Both related the cultural history of design with heritage studies focused on Cultural Heritage: “Figured & Galo de Barcelos” and “Design education: innovative pedagogical experiences: learning collaborative”.

b) Extended the research related to the history of Portuguese Visual and Material Culture to educational contexts. The results of this research were presented through the FCT funded project “CIDES.PT-Interpretation Centre for Portuguese Design”;

c) With the collaboration of companies (Casa Ferreirinha, Packigráfica) and institutions (Academy of Cinema, National Theatre D. Maria II) researched collections and archives related to Portuguese design using hermeneutics as narrative approach in the context of the History of Design;

d) Structured and developed the project of I&D “RARAP-Augmented Reality in Radiology and Anatomic Pathology: Interaction Design and Image Epistemology” which questioned the limits of the representation of images in epistemological and medical contexts;

All these projects are incubators of activity for the next 5 years. Thus, it is intended to deepen and broaden research inter/transdisciplinary in other areas such:design criticism and aesthetics of design, increasingly, in anthropology and neuroscienceThe group plans to establish the crossing with theory and practice, with the other ID + groups and expand the international dimension of the research, continuing the already prolific organizing events, as well as create protocols with other partners.

Theory and History of Design; Cultural Heritage and Patrimony; Visual, Material and Immaterial Culture; Design Education and Design Studies.
Maria Helena Ferreira Braga Barbosa


Group Coordinator elected by the Scientific Committee, two-year renewable term;
Scientific Committee formed by all integrated members;
Project coordinators emerge out of the projects themselves, or if necessary, appointed by the SC;
Plenary: Periodic meetings with all the members of this group, are set at least twice a year.

Membros integrados
Maria Helena Ferreira Braga Barbosa
Alexandra de Jesus Costa Beleza Moreira
Ana Filomena Curralo Gonçalves
Carla Suzana Correia de Assunção Dias
Sandra Isabel Valente Antunes
Estudantes de Doutoramento
Aurora Fernanda Guimarães Brochado e Silva
Igor Alexandre Pereira Ramos
Outros investigadores
The group plans to establish the crossing with theory and practice, with the other ID + groups and expand the international dimension of the research, continuing the already prolific organizing events, as well as create protocols with other partners.
Two application to the call H2020 “[THoDE] Intertwined Histories of Design in Europe: the arts of daily living” (2015) and the “[Dehode] “Intertwined histories of design in Europe: Contemporary arts of daily living” (2017); The first application aimed to review and rewrite the European modern History of Design using the transnational approach, with the participation of 4 European Universities, and the second application proposed to revisit the History of Design in contemporary and modern Europe via the many advances made by the discipline in recent years throughout the whole of Europe, involving partnerships with Universities from 10 European capitals, in addition to the 4 previously mentioned, and strengthened by incorporating beneficiary Museum partners from 4 EU member states. These universities, museums and other contributing partners, came together with the desire to firmly position Creative Practices of Design and their History within a European Cultural Heritage. Despite not being financed these applications have secured a basis for wider partnership proposals in the next few years with the intent of developing Portuguese design history as an integral moment of wider European histories of design, material culture and heritage. Connections formed in this process have also lead to papers and participation on a roundtable in Taipei.

The celebration of the 170 years of the “National Theater D. Maria II” in Lisbon, resulted in an invitation to research and study the posters from the point of view of the history of design with an objective of the “Theatre in posters: The collection of National Theatre Dona Maria II” held from 13.04.2016 to 30.12.2017. The work included data retrieval and integration, collaborating with the curators responsible for the selection of posters and researching/writing an essay for the catalogue that accompanied the event. During the exhibition period monthly guided tours were conducted and knowledge transfer was made according to the profile of the visitors (academic students, and the public sphere).

The project “Design, what it means? Innovative Pedagogical Experiences: Collaborative Learning” underlines the importance of Design to improve diverse aspects from daily life while the society in general seams not recognise its value. Undergraduate students explores the theme from an original and critical perspective, by raising questions, accessing information and by doing their own research, addressing topics such as misconceptions of Design. Interviews are carried out to the local and international community, or from the labour market. This project adopts innovative teaching and learning methodologies, a systematic research on active and student- centered pedagogy, not only for its continued improvement processes, but also for dissemination of practices in the academic community.