Monday, April 7, 2008

Stefan Sagmeister - Things I have Learned in My Life So Far

Images from the Hillman Curtis film which documents Stefan Sagmeister's exhibition in New York
(that 'Self Confidence' billboard is made up entirely of bananas!)

Stefan Sagmeister is a supremely talented designer, whose work blurs the distinctions between art and design. He also seems like an incredibly humble, thoughtful and generally nice guy. His ongoing project 'Things I have learned in my life so far' is such a simple, powerful idea. In its simplest form, its been described as a 'typographic project'... but its become more than that.

Stefan's design studio in New York have transformed these simple sentences into typographic works, from billboards in France to sign-toting inflatable monkeys on the streets of Scotland. People from all walks of life have also contributed their lessons learned on the website. It seems these simple truths have resonated with many, and have in some ways taken on a life of their own.

A reader sent me a link to this amazing little film by Hillman Curtis, which follows the set-up of Stefan's exhibition in Soho New York, as part of this ongoing project.

There's something incredible about this little film. The universality and sheer simplicity of Stefan's life lessons? Stefan's delicate voice-over, that sounds somehow like the voice of an old friend? Or is it the glimpses of New York reflected in the gallery windows?

They seem elementary, but there's something in the re-telling these age-old lessons that gives them more meaning...

Worrying solves nothing
Self confidence produces fine results
Helping other people helps me
Having guts always works out for me
Starting a charity is surprisingly easy
Being not truthful always works against me
Everything I do always comes back to me
Money does not make me happy
Trying to look good limits my life

Such lovely ideas to start your week...!

watch the film here
buy the book here


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