The Hunter Museum of American Art in Chattanooga, TN has recently opened a new exhibit, Good Design: Stories from Herman Miller. Inspired by the book “Herman Miller: The Purpose of Design” by John R. Berry, the focus of the exhibition is the process and design behind the creation of a product rather than the end result itself. This is truly a thought provoking show.
The introduction of the book has a wonderful perspective on design. Here is a quote…
“Design is a process, not a formula. It follows a logic but is open to those unexpected discoveries that come from experimentation and from making connections between seemingly disconnected ideas.
Design is a noun, a verb, and a problem-solving process. It is art with a purpose. In order to produce solutions, design requires a clear understanding of the conditions, constraints, and opportunities of a particular situation. Good design does not happen in a vacuum. A good designer is able to recognize a need, identify the relevant limitations, and devise a solution.
The word design evokes a wide range of images and meanings. The term is applied to objects and processes, brands and environments, critical reviews and experiences – all of which can be good or bad. Design can be elitist or egalitarian, a profession, and a result. Any way you look at it, design in some way affects everyone….
…Common to all design professions is the desire to make something better.”