Directed by Gary Hustwit
$9 / $7 Speed and AIGA Louisville members
“The man who all but invented consumer product design as we know it today.”—The Guardian
For over fifty years, Dieter Rams has left an indelible mark on the field of product design and the world at large with his iconic work at Braun and Vitsoe. The objects Rams has designed have touched the lives of millions of people–– Braun coffeemakers, shavers, stereos, calculators, speakers, or alarm clocks; Oral-B toothbrushes; or Vitsoe 606 shelving systems, for example.
His work has influenced the way most of today’s consumer products look and function. Your computer or phone likely looks the way it does because of Rams. His influence also extends to his “Ten Principles of Good Design,” a list of edicts that champions simplicity, honesty, and restraint, and still applies to design theory and practice today.
Rams includes in-depth conversations with the designer, and deep dives into his philosophy, his process, and his inspirations. But one of the most interesting parts of Rams’s story is that he now looks back on his career with some regret. “If I had to do it over again, I would not want to be a designer,” he’s said. “There are too many unnecessary products in this world.” Rams has long been an advocate for the ideas of environmental consciousness and long-lasting products. He’s dismayed by today’s unsustainable world of over-consumption, where “design” has been reduced to a meaningless marketing buzzword.
Rams is a design documentary, but it’s also a rumination on consumerism, materialism, and sustainability. His philosophy is about more than just design, it’s about a way to live. It’s about getting rid of distractions and visual clutter and just living with what you need. The film features original music by pioneering musician and producer Brian Eno. 2018, U.S., video, in English and German with English subtitles, 74 minutes.