A book about an alternative approach to design theory and the making of experiences. The kinds of experience that define the spaces we live, work and play in – the kinds of experience that have the power to transform lives. This book is an ode to that power. It is for anyone interested in design, be they creator, communicator or consumer.
Contrary to what one might imagine, there is no such thing as an experience designer. At least not in the sense that we might talk of an individual recognised as such. To make experiences is to be human. Shaman, architect, food engineer – you name it, they are all experience designers. Informed by an understanding of people’s needs and wants – our stories, our rituals, our myths – the beautifully designed experience has the power to transform lives. The Experience Book is an ode to that power.
Essentially, it is a book about time and how we use it to design and make experiences that define the spaces we live, work and play in. Divided into a guidebook and a sourcebook, it begins by explaining what it is about the human mind that so deeply feasts on the notion of the experience, and then employs this knowledge to suggest a method or framework for designing experiences. The guidebook done, the sourcebook serves as inspiration for the art of experience design, with precedents drawn from the past 35,000 years’ worth of transformative experience making.
One of the first publications about the attributes that together make what is fast becoming a recognised discipline, The Experience Book is beautifully presented. Comprised of a wonderfully eclectic range of written forms, illustrated by a fantastic mix of drawings and photography, and backed by historical and contemporary examples from the worlds of architecture, branding, fashion, music, art, sport and business, it introduces the maker of experiences as part ethnographer, storyteller, master planner and performance artist.
Challenging the orthodoxy of function, reasserting process over monument and product, delighting in the unexpected, and championing the spectator over the spectacle, this is a book for anyone interested in the power of design, be they creator, communicator or consumer.