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Welcome to progress! Thanks to those flat screen designers! Satellite designers, and web designers you will never see an image like this again!

If you have not read this book Design for the Real World by Victor Papanek in the seventies, eighties or nineties and you dare to profess that you studied Design, now is your chance again.

Victor Papanek, a Viennese born designer, author, at times a loathed design critic, green creativity guru, ecologist, humanist, futurist and University professor at various colleges during his long and varied career is back in fashion in the Design(er) World. His archives were recently acquired by the University of Applied Arts in Vienna (Ziggy used to say, “All that comes from Vienna, the eternal human melting pot, is good”) and Papanek’s most famous book shown above is available in a revised edition as a free ebook.

img624The book benefits from a 13 page introduction by R. Buckminster Fuller, a 20th Century Design Icon in his own right, inventor of the Geodesic dome and a futurist, environmental thinker. The book was originally published in Sweden, and I wonder how many design conscious Swedes actually read it? It is certainly among the first books on Design Criticism that also has a very extensive bibliography of books on aspects relating indirectly to design, like the environment and social sciences, but some of these are definitely worth reading, in my opinion.

img626Most of the titles are long out of print and they are in some instances also very obscure titles, but do not tell me after you have read the book that you did not find any useful references here. For a good read on Victor Papanek read the article in the New York Times with the link here.

Read from the Vienna archives here.

A worthwhile entry in wikipedia on “Bucky”Buckminster Fuller can be seen here.