Join Gary Hustwit for an in-depth discussion in this video Karim Rashid, part of Objectified.
[Machinery sounds] - Design is about mass production. Design is using industry to produce serialized goods. And I try everything I can in the mass market to really change the goods that people who know nothing about design, or the people who say they don't care about design, or the people who don't believe that their world should have contemporary goods in it.
Those are the people I think design could have such an amazing effect on their lives. You know, when I was a teenager, I had this white, from Claritone. I think it was a Canadian company at the time. It was a white kind of bubble stereo with these two bubbled white speakers. And it was probably very inexpensive. It was a real democratic product. And it was a turntable and the whole thing built in. And it was a beautiful thing.
It was something that was what I, looking back and thinking why it was a beautiful thing was because it was very self-contained and the message was very strong and very simple and at the same time it was very human. There was a quality about it. It was like a womb. It was like an extension of us somehow. It was soft, it was engaging, there was something about it. And I used to have this alarm clock radio a Braun, and it was the Dieter Rams design in the late sixties. And there were these objects in my life that I really was in love with.
They brought so much to me. And I can remember going through the teenage angst thing of feeling depressed or something and lying on my bed, and I would just look at the alarm clock and felt better immediately. So I always had this really strong relationship with physical products. [soft, calm music] There's something that moves through a lot of my forms. And that is to speak about a kind of digital, technological, or techno-organic world.
That somehow if I do things that are very, very organic but I'm using new technologies, I feel like I'm doing something, in a way, that's a physical interpretation of the digital age. We have advanced technologically so far and yet somehow it's always some sort of paranoia where we're afraid to really say we live in the third technological revolution. I have an iPod in my pocket, I have a mobile phone, I have a laptop, but then somehow I end up going home and sitting on wood-spindle, Wittengale-like chairs.
So in a way you could argue that we're building all these kind of really kitsch stage sets that have absolutely nothing to do with the age in which we live in. It's strange. I find it very extremely perverse, in a way. Maybe, like. Imagine right now, I'm sitting at my laptop, but then, oh, I've got to go out, what am I going to do, get my horse and carriage? No, of course not. Why do we feel like we need to kind of keep revisiting the archetype over and over and over again? Digital cameras, for example, which, their format, proportion, the fact that they're a horizontal rectangle, are models of the original silver film camera.
So in turn, it's the film that defined the shape of the camera. All of a sudden, our digital cameras have no film. So why on earth do we have the same shape we have? Now without sounding like a hypocrite, I revisit archetypes. I've designed many chairs. With that given, you say, okay, now I'm going to design a chair. What can I do here? How can I put my fingerprint on it and differentiate itself from everybody else or every other designer, in a way? And am I playing a game to show that I can differentiate or am I actually really doing something that is contributive? Because this is the big issue here with designers.
Are the things we are doing really making an effect and making change? [soft synthesizer music] 78% of the world is completely impractical. 78% of the world is uncomfortable. You feel it. You feel that hotels are poorly designed. You sit in chairs that are very uncomfortable. And it's crazy, this. Imagine, if you design a million chairs to date or how many chairs have been done in the world, why on earth would we have an uncomfortable chair? There's no excuse whatsoever. [soft synthesizer music]
Objectified is a documentary about industrial design; it's about the manufactured objects we surround ourselves with, and the people who make them. Gary Hustwit, the director of Helvetica, talks with Dieter Rams, Marc Newson, Jonathan Ive, and other renowned designers behind some of the world's most iconic products. lynda.com is proud to offer this film to our members, along with over one hour of online-exclusive bonus movies.