I recently took an ATLAS course where we were tasked to write a Design Manifesto as our final paper. At first, I thought it would be easy to pin down my aesthetic; however, it proved to be more difficult than that.
So, I began with a man named Dieter Rams. Dieter Rams is famous for his 10 Principles of Good Design. According to Rams, good design is…
…and as little design as possible.
The one that strikes me the most is the last principle; thus, the title of this post. I believe that most objects today are over-designed and therefore takes away from the aesthetic of the object. When I look at a piece of furniture or a building that is clean and minimal, I am more drawn to it than one that is plastered with ornamentation.
I think that’s my aesthetic. Straightforward and clean.
Dieter Rams designed the Braun radio, pictured below:
This radio is not only a functional radio, but to me, it’s a piece of art. Why should anyone display anything in their house that doesn’t improve the overall quality of their home? We should all be surrounded by beautiful objects. But then again, aesthetics is subjective… and that’s a topic for another day.
Let’s talk furniture for a second. Take the classic Eames Chair:
Why is this particular chair so revered within the design community? Well, there are many answers to that question. But what I believe is one of the most important answers is that it draws you in. You want to sit in that chair. It is friendly, it is straightforward (it looks like a chair, it is a chair) and it’s not over-designed.
I always joke to my friends about this, but secretly it’s true: nothing makes me more emotional than a good typeface. I think I care more about typefaces than the average human– and I am completely okay with that.
From modern graphic design,
to the classic posters of Josef Muller-Brockman,
their simplicity never ceases to amaze me and inspire me to embrace my artistry and develop my own aesthetic that is based on modernism and minimalism.