Netflix's Abstract Peers Into the Lives of Rockstar Designers

WIRED | 2/10/2017 | Liz Stinson
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DESIGN ISN’T A dark art. Websites don’t build themselves. Neither does typography kern, nor cities plan. People do all those things. The new Netflix series Abstract, which starts streaming today, tries to help people not only see the built, designed world, but understand how it gets that way.

Let’s get something out of the way first—WIRED is all entwined with this show. Our former editor in chief, Scott Dadich, is an executive producer and the host. At least two of the people profiled on the show have contributed to the magazine, and at least two more have been the subjects of WIRED stories. Is that weird? Yeah, probably. But WIRED has made design—as process and beat—a priority for 25 years. That’s not design as some high-brow quality of objects owned by rich people, by the way. We try to see design as a way of thinking; so does Abstract.

Netflix - Show - Chef - Table - Abstract

Like the popular Netflix show Chef’s Table, Abstract focuses on the lives and ideas of creators, trying to tease out the drama behind the effort to bring an idea to life. The series’ eight episodes each focus on one person—illustrator Christoph Niemann, graphic designer Paula Scher, photographer Platon, shoe designer Tinker Hatfield, architect Bjarke Ingels, interior designer Ilse Crawford, car designer Ralph Gilles, and stage designer Es Devlin—prying into his or her habits, insecurities, and, occasional bravado. “The show is about going inside the minds of some of the greatest designers in the world and unpacking their creative process in a truthful...
(Excerpt) Read more at: WIRED
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