Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Different Kind of To-Do List

I like lists--I make a to-do one every week, and I like to read or watch things where people share various lists. If you think about, work on, work around, or even visit exhibits, here's two great lists. They aren't about exhibits to see, or steps in a process, but about larger ideas. For me, they stand as a different kind of to-do list--ones that remind me to think in bigger, more contemplative ways about my work.

The first is Kathleen McLean's "Manifesto for the (r)Evolution of Museum Exhibitions" which was posted online on her website. I've admired her work for a long time, and her 1993 book, Planning for People in Museum Exhibitions is a vital part of my bookshelf. She gives us 18 ways to think differently about the work we do (thanks to Paul Orselli for highlighting the talk in his report on the ASTC conference).

Thanks to Design Observer I came across designer Dieter Rams' 10 design principles. He's an industrial designer, but I think his principles hold equally true for exhibitions. Can you apply these to your work?
  • Good design is innovative
  • Good design makes a product useful
  • Good design is aesthetic
  • Good design helps us to understand a product
  • Good design is unobtrusive
  • Good design is honest
  • Good design is durable
  • Good design is consequent to the last detail
  • Good design is concerned with the environment
  • Good design is as little design as possible.


bernie gallagher said...

Another attribute-

"Good design is alive. It touches all the senses. It communicates to the feelings." - Walter Landor

Linda Norris said...

Bernie--Absolutely--and the alive part seems hard to explain, but easy to recognize when you see or experience it.