Dieter Rams, Photograph by Abisag Tüllmann 


Dieter Rams, Photograph by Abisag Tüllmann

















Last night I saw the film Objectified, by Gary Hustwit, at the Toronto Hot Docs Film Festival. This most recent film by the maker of  ‘Helvetica’ delves into the fascinating and often mis-understood world of Industrial Design.

From the website…

“Objectified is a feature-length documentary about our complex relationship with manufactured objects and, by extension, the people who design them. It’s a look at the creativity at work behind everything from toothbrushes to tech gadgets. It’s about the designers who re-examine, re-evaluate and re-invent our manufactured environment on a daily basis. It’s about personal expression, identity, consumerism, and sustainability. ”

Gary Hustwit on making films about design: “I’ve found that most designers are incredibly skillful at explaining what they do to a non-designer, probably because they spend so much time justifying their work to clueless clients.”
Leaving the packed, sold out theatre, I heard lots of  comments by people who still just ‘don’t get’ design. Here is one…”Designers are just a bunch of ‘so called’ artists that sit around drawing pretty pictures.”
I find it hard to believe that we saw that same film. 

Featured in Objectified, is Dieter Rams, an Industrial Designer closely associated with the consumer products company Braun, and the ‘Functionalist’ school of Industrial Design, “Less, but better”. He talked in the film about his 
10 Commandments of Good Design.

“Back in the early 1980s, Dieter Rams was becoming increasingly concerned by the state of the world around him – “an impenetrable confusion of forms, colours and noises.” Aware that he was a significant contributor to that world, he asked himself an important question: is my design good design?”

He was ahead of his time – as any great, innovative Designer is.
See the film if you have a chance. You will view the world we live in and the objects that inhabit it, in a new way.