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Why Design Matters

MFA exhibit  a visual story of culture through design
MFA exhibit a visual story of culture through design

I once got into a heated argument about an author, and his choice to write, what can be described as easy summer reading. His books are good, fast paced and huge crowd pleasers, but something lacks in his writing. The way I see it is, a well educated man decided to take all his knowledge, along side his linguistic skills, and serve the most diluted form of these to his readers. Till this day any form of diluted creation rubs me a little the wrong way.

Recently a big phone manufacture came out with an "all-you-can-think-off" watch. Aside from the technological aspects, again I had that uneasy feeling of something lacking. It felt that even though probably a lot of hours had been spent on making this watch, the intricate history of watch manufacturing and design was sidelined and somewhat ignored. The watch who has come out of a ground breaking company that holds steady at the front of the design world, feels like the diluted from of all of these. In fact most of the wearable technology lack in the departments of creativity and design, or are just plain ugly, geared mainly to a specific target audience, but we now know they won't be the only ones wearing these.

Why am I getting so worked up about this? As a designer I feel we all carry some visual and culture responsibly for our surroundings, especially ground breaking manufactures. If a manufacture that size comes out with a device that is so plain looking so far removed from the look and feel of a well crafted watch, the rest will follow that same diluted down version of a watch. Which in turn leaves us with design reductionism all around us. Same as the famous google landing page that has dictated a certain "look and feel" for web interface, these new wearable devices create a visually dull environment.

So what? you say. But in an era where never before again people around the world across any social-economic background have access to mobile phones, wearable devices, and easy read books, our culture and history gets diluted. As people with access to higher education it is our responsibility to demand higher design be available for all, further democratizing access to good design, which tells the story of cultures and the history of people in a visually cohesive and responsible manner. I refuse to live in a world of shrunk down versions of rectangles on my wrist or of bleak looking landing pages, I don't want it to define the rich culture I come from, I don't want my kids to grow up in a diluted version of the world.


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