Industrial designer Dieter Rams has left a huge mark on the field of design. Not just for his legendary work at Braun and Vitsoe, but because of his design philosophy.

Towards the end of the 1970s, Rams became increasingly aware of the consumption culture and excess materialism. He described the world as “an impenetrable confusion of forms, colours and noises.” Aware of the significant influence he was having through the products he created, he asked himself: is my design good design? To help inform the design decisions he was making, Rams created what he believed to be the ten most important principles for good design. These principles still influence contemporary design as it’s about a ‘better, but less’ approach. Getting rid of distractions and visual clutter, and just living with what you need.

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit created a feature-length documentary on Dieter Rams his life and work. The documentary, simply titled Rams, will include in-depth conversations and dive deeper into what motivated Rams to articulate new commandments for design - long before sustainability became a buzzword. Intriguingly, it will also touch on how Rams looks back on his career with some regret. “If I had to do it again, I would not want to be a designer,” Rams says. “There are too many unnecessary products in this world.” The film, which features original music by musician and producer Brian Eno will be released later this year. Rams, a must-see about a man, not a myth, but indeed a legend.

Text: Marije Popping
Gary Hustwit