John Maeda, who has long been a star in the design and technology scene in the United States and Asia, is setting the standards for design, information technology and art. His theme is “Simplicity.” Maeda insists that “technology should adapt to the human needs – not vice versa!” His ideas already are taking hold in business. For his accomplishments, he is receiving today one of the most prestigious and highly endowed designer prizes in the world. This marks the 15th year the Award is being conferred by the Raymond Loewy Foundation to a prominent and internationally successful personality in the field of design.
John Maeda – driving force for the 21st Century
John Maeda, according to Esquire Magazine, is one of the 21 most important people of the 21st Century and, according to I.D Magazine, one of the 50 most important designers in 2004. The internationally highly renowned and 38-year-young John Maeda insists that computers should be made simpler and adapted to the human senses. Maeda’s part philosophical, part technology-critical ideas about simplicity are nurturing an absolute boom in the simplicity idea. His conception of simplicity goes far beyond the simplification of interfaces or the miniaturization of devices. For Maeda, simplicity is a radical new adventure to make complex and high-performance technology uncomplicated in its application and to thereby liberate it from its intimidation. But simplicity does not only mean that technology should be made simpler. “A high-performance functional object is very complex and complicated in its application because of its potential. To make something simpler often means to make it less powerful. But how do we make something powerful and yet simple in its application? That is the challenge,” says Maeda about his concept.
These claims and demands of Maeda convinced the jury of the Raymond Loewy Foundation. “For many years, John Maeda has been systematically engaged in fundamental research. In doing so he has developed a contemporary and groundbreaking form, to embark on exemplary new paths of awareness with design and design competence, not only as to design, but rather as to all of our being and essence,” says the jury commentary.