Feature Friday: Bruce Mau on the Power of Design

“Design is… a method of leadership… you can design the life that you want to live.”

-Bruce Mau on CBC’s The Current

Yesterday, I again heard CBC’s The Current talk design with renowned designer Bruce Mau for their series, “By Design.” As a New Year’s thing, they were replaying the best of this series, and Mau’s interview was at the top.

If you’re “into” design, you’ve likely heard of Mau. If you’re not, you may not be familiar with him, but his ideas on design are really concepts for everyone. He’s not just talking visual or artistic design, but the design surrounding our entire lives–the spaces we exist in, the objects and technology we use, the systems we exist within.

In this interview on The Current, Mau discusses the importance of design as a defining factor in how we live. He links issues and problems in our daily lives (for example, climate change) to the design choices (oil-powered vehicles) that led to those unforeseen and unpleasant outcomes. I really like the note that these “problems” are the result of success, not failure.

This is a perfect discussion heading into the New Year, because part of Mau’s central concept is that if we’ve designed our way into certain messes, we can design our way out. There’s a lot of hope in his perspective.

So if you have a wee chunk of time (the full interview is about 24 minutes long), I highly recommend a listen. If you don’t have that much time, at least check out his “Incomplete Manifesto for Growth,” a one-page, 43-point list of advice to live and work by.

The Current Interview with Bruce Mau

Happy New Year!

Featured Image of Seattle Public Library by John Zacherle on Flickr

Featured Image of Seattle Public Library by John Zacherle on Flickr

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