Friday, May 18, 2007

design for 100%

i spend a lot of time highlighting design that is, to me, beautiful, gorgeous, striking, stunning. looking back through my posts is a lesson in the superlative. anyhow, beauty in all of its forms catches my eye most, but utitilty is also important to me.

and all the better when utility and good design go together to make life better - for everyone. check out the new exhibit "Design for the Other 20%" at the Cooper Hewitt in NYC or the website if you can't get there. the exibit features remarkable design that aims to improve the lives of people who need help from useful, well designed objects the most.

Here are two of the featured designs:

*the One Laptop per Child project which has developed $100 computers to 'bring learning, information and communication to children in developing countries.'

*the Katrina Furniture Project, which 'creates neighborhood furniture-making workshop facilities using the debris left by storm and helps build the economic and social capacity of neighborhoods in New Orleans that faced experienced severe economic and social challenges even before Katrina. The workshops train community members in making furniture and the fundamentals of business, and function as a neighborhood-based place of work and resource center while residents rebuild their homes.'

They've made this graceful pew for one of the many churches devastated by Katrina:

Images courtesy of the Cooper Hewitt.

remarkable for both their utility and benefits - as well as their good design - these are worth checking out. you can also go upstairs and check out the, in some cases less useful, gorgeous items in "Design Life Now".

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