We went to the Matisse exhibition at the Tate the other day. It's good, not as good as the press seem to think it is. I wouldn't say "Nothing can prepare you for the joyous brilliance". It's worth a visit though.
A friend I went with remarked that while the pictures were nice, you can see them all in Ikea. Which is sort of true.
Also, taking pictures. Come on museums, come on.
"We start from the presumption that our people are talented and want to contribute. We accept that, without meaning to, our company is stifling that talent in myriad unseen ways. Finally, we try to identify those impediments and fix them."
I've just started reading Creativity Inc. It's already brilliant.
On Saturday I toured the Neon Museum in Las Vegas. Sometimes called the Neon Boneyard or Graveyard it's a collection of old signs, not all neon, from the casinos and hotels of Las Vegas. Some have been fully restored, some still work and some are just lying around.
A volunteer guide gave us an hour long tour which explained the history of the signs and with it a fascinating history of Las Vegas. The museum is well worth a visit even if you're not a designer. I went with 5 non-designers and they all enjoyed it. But if you're a type geek it's pretty close to heaven. You're allowed to take as many pictures as you like for personal use. I've put all mine on Flickr.
All the signs in Vegas are now LED of course. Essentially massive TVs playing massive banner ads. A bit like the animated screens on the tube but much, much bigger. I always think neon will make a comeback and someone will make a casino covered in neon. But I doubt it.
Anyway. Enjoy the pics and visit if you're ever near.
I went to see Thomas Heatherwick talk at the Design Museum the other night. It's been a busy week for talks.
Heatherwick is, of course, a genius. Lovely bloke, very down to earth humble way of presenting.
He even had a picture of the Tellytubbes outside of the Seed Pavillion.
One small concern. At the end there was lots of future work which was a bit Starchitect. I hope he doesn't turn into one of those. I always loved his ability to take pretty mundane things and design them as wonderful, interesting, beautifully functional, clever objects. I hope he doesn't end up all wavy line buildings in Dubai. He's better than that.
Clay Shirky came into the office yesterday.
One of the many interesting points he made was people moan about there being information overload these days, which is nonsense, ever since Gutenberg it's been impossible to keep up with all the "information".
What's changed is that your filters don't work as well as they used to. The filters you use to choose which books you read don't work for the internet, twitter, 24 hours news etc etc.
I love this.
If we distill that as - there isn't too much information, you just need better filters - you can then swap information for almost anything and it still works.
There isn't too much TV, you just need better filters.
There isn't too much email, you just need better filters.
There aren't too many meetings, you just need better filters.
Interesting thought to apply to work. What filters do you need to be able to get stuff done? How do you create better filters? How can you make filters that others would find useful.
Systems. Filters. Good.
I went to a Q&A thing with Jeremy Deller. The theme was loosely - what is modern art? It was fairly sedate until someone asked - what is the role of the gallery in modern art?
Deller replied, "They're dry, well lit and secure."
So so good. More soon.
For many reasons. Original tweet here.
We have a Prius. It parks itself. Looks a bit like this.
CLICK HERE to watch the video because I can't understand Flickr anymore.
The technology is way ahead of the design, or of the limitations of the design. Or the interface.
I wrote this on a tub of hummus the other day. We always open a tub of hummus and then a few days later we have no idea when it was opened. We can't tell if it's gone off or not. Chaos ensues.
I uploaded this pic to Flickr and jokingly typed, "Internet of Dad UI. See also Old GitHub, RuriComb etc."
And this too.
But this has nothing to do with Dads, or Mums or old people or rural people. But there is probably a point about looking at the behaviours of people who have lots of experience of using one particular thing and then designing around that.
Ravi curates a brilliant mix of speakers, big names and unknowns. 45 minutes and 5 minute talks. Design, architecure, digital and then the odd band thrown in. An inspiring, entertaining and educational mix.
Michael Bierut MCs every year, entertains every night and then goes running along the beach with whoever makes it at 7am.
Feels like a long time ago now. We hadn't yet transitioned all departments over to GOV.UK that wouldn't happen for another two months, and the nominatons for Design of the Year had only just been announced.
I switched energy suppliers at the start of the year. I've never done this before and they say if you haven't done that you're bound to save money. I used Martin Lewis's Cheap Energy Club and it seemed pretty good.
I chose to switch to EDF, which was cheaper, and under their "price promise" promised to "let you know if a competitor or EDF Energy launches a product that's cheaper by more than £52 per year".
Which is nice, but yeah, whatever.
Until today when they emailed me.
Which surprised me. Very good.
"Paul Smith collaborated with Evian to design a limited edition bottle."
No he didn't, Evian gave him some money and someone suggested putting the brand assets on the bottle.
"...imbuing the bottle with a sense of energy and fun."
No it doesn't, it imbues the bottle with a sense of laziness and a lack of creativity.
I love Paul Smith. But designers should stop doing these terrible, lazy "collaborations".