This was the final project for IAT230: Design for Digital Environments. Working in teams, our task was to refresh an icon of modern design by Enzo Mari.

Mari defined his work as an “elaborated or constructed in a way that corresponds entirely to the purpose or function“. The Timor Calendar, a perpetual desk calendar would be a statement to that. Mari brought together beautiful form and solid function together in this piece, creating something so sustainable that the calendar has been in production since 1967. Time is endless. Our task was to come up with something as comparable.

Problem Statement
In addition to the efficiency and accuracy of ubiquitous electronic calendars, the calendar we intended to design should provide elegant simplicity and joy-of-use to users with its unique style which reflects both the users’ social status and personal aesthetic value.

The first revision intended to introduce affordances into the product while continuing to keep the virtues of Mari’s concepts for modern design. Here, the user will still enjoy the experience of manually flipping dates, while the enlarged base serves as a paper tray to hold documents. I also added extra spacing below the dates as a way to let users stick notes for all those important reminders. Out of the three revisions for the first phase of the project, we were told to move on with this.

Mari drew inspiration for the Timor Calendar’s form from railway traffic signals when he was a kid. I figured that this would be a solid next step for this project, to look for something that will inspire the form of our revised calendar. We found inspiration in the slow and fragile snail and decided that it would be the perfect metaphor to lead our design.


Use of the golden ratio helps refine the ‘snail’ inspired form. The snail would be a rough representation of where we stand against time, slow in the race against time. And thus the calendar intends to remind users that we must use this precious commodity to the best of our abilities.

A rendering of the our revised Timor calendar, notice how we kept the paper tray and used the ‘head’ of the snail as a letter holder. We figured that if it’s going to take up some space on someone’s desk, it must be quite useful. And with its overly simplified form, we were able to quickly deploy a “paper” prototype…