Monday, January 28, 2008

Designing the future

Food for Thought: typography and food reunited.

"Holidays are always a time to gather around the dining table with family and friends to share good food and stories about times gone by. Now family favorites--whether text or images--can actually appear on the fruit, nuts, and vegetables being served with the help of a laser sign cutter. Since the process takes only five minutes per edible, the food messages can be extremely timely."

Before 3D printing musical instruments or computer etching on bread, David Small had thought of printing on fruits, a way to catch the attention of Martha Stewart. This is the story that today Dr David Small told us during a talk at our lab.

Awesome speaker and visionary designer, he presented his twenty-year history of inventing the future of visual design. From the beginning, as a student of Muriel Cooper in the Visible Language Workshop, he has maintained a strong interest in understanding how technology is changing the way that information can be designed and appreciated. His company, Small Design Firm, creates unique environments in which people come into contact with rich, tactile information. With a focus on the interplay between computer technology, interaction, dynamic typography and information design, he sketched out some next steps towards the Design of the Future.

I loved his story, the way he is fond of typography and sees it everywhere as a design principle for his interactive products. I found his Museum of Sex installation perfectly expressive.

One of the four interactive exhibit for the Museum of Sex

He revisited the written correspondence of a prostitute with one of her client. The exhibition presents a bed, with a women underneath a fabric, with letters projected onto the body shape traveling through the interstices of the white sheets. The letters resemble ants that dynamically convey the message of her fate, constructing words from her correspondence that announce her death. Very well executed, the piece is moving. What fascinates me about his work, is the actuality of his design principles. He proposes that design research is the key to the future innovation, well... we'll see...

Posted by Cati Vaucelle


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