Design for Meaning
It is time for product designers to reconsider our purpose and step into maturity. Our work has the capacity to enable human unfoldment and reshape culture.
Let's evolve the idea of beauty and use our creative skill consciously to design for deeper meaning. Here are five proposals.
1. Design for Our Future
Before we start, let's consider the big picture:
Why this product ?
How does it serve life ?
How does it enable a more whole future ?
Only when our purpose is relevant, meaningful and regenerative, we continue.
Beauty of Wholeness
2. Design to Engage the Senses
Any product is a symphony of sensory experiences. Our job as designers is to compose a meaningful symphony. Real materials gives pleasure. Great craft feels great. Products transmit intentions from the state of mind that created them. Compose deliberately. With integrity, authenticity and care.
Let's design for real humans, and for full spectrum perception.
Beauty of Resonance
3. Design to Expand the Mind
Symbolism and metaphors extends the landscape of meaning. If they are sophisticated and relevant. Products with layers of open-ended stories fuel our imagination and deepens our relationship to them. When we care, we keep.
Be poetic. Feel culture. And design object that re-enchant our world
Beauty of Wonder
4. Design to Evoke our Souls
Products can have a certain aura that awaken something deep in us. Beyond perception and mind. Timeless. Infinite. Connected. As if they point to nature's animating principle. Let's be soulful when we design and be in alignment with the evolutionary impuls.
Beauty of Connectedness
5. Design to Transform Us
Products may remind us to extend and unfold ourselves. Perhaps even become the ones we have been waiting for. We need participators in and co-creators of our one shared future. Let's design to inspire and empower people to be the change they want to see in the world.
Beauty of Transformation
Born in Copenhagen in 1963, Jakob Wagner received a B.Sc. in Design Engineering at DIA-M in Denmark (1987) and completed his second degree in Product Design at Art Center, Switzerland (1992).
In 1993 following internships/studies in the United States, Italy and France, he founded Jakob Wagner Studio in Copenhagen. The studio began by focusing on high-tech products for medical, professional and sports applications and later on home products. This led to product lines for Alessi, Bang & Olufsen, Menu, Muuto and Stelton and furniture projects for Cappellini, B&B Italia, Moroso and Hay among others.
Jakob’s work has been exhibited internationally and has received numerous awards (6 IF awards, 3 Red Dots, Bundespreis, Designer of the Year) as well as becoming a part of the permanent exhibition at MOMA, New York.
Wagner’s simple yet sophisticated work expresses the essence of a product in a minimalist, poetic and playful manner. His design process is detailed and considers all angles of the user experience, which results in timeless, well balanced design.