I thought this was fascinating and comprehensive overview of Braun and Dieter Rams contribution to the success of the company though I think it has a quite a serious editorial flaw.
The publishers have been quite clever in accommodating the huge amount of text and graphic material in a book of just over eight hundred pages. The text, German on left-hand pages and English on the right, has been printed on very thin paper (known as bible stock in the trade) which has a certain amount of show-through. The excellent product shots (314 pages) have been printed on a good matt art with another paper used for the remaining photo essays. Incidentally the color work in the book is printed with an impressive 300 screen, most art books run to 175 to 250.
Eleven of the nineteen chapters are text (on the thin paper) and explore in as much detail as you could want about German and middle European design in the first decades of the last century and how it influenced Rams, particularly the Bauhaus and Ulm design laboratories. A fascinating sixty-five page chapter: 'Dieter Rams, Braun, Vitsoe and the shrinking world' explores the reasons for the companies success and Rams contribution with brilliant product design. Another chapter: 'Graphic design: Braun and Vitsoe' delves, in part, into the typeface used on the products, always in lower-case and originally Akzidenz-Grotesk but after the sixties switching to Helvetica.
Between the essays and possibly the main strength of the book are the photo product pages, basically electrical products for the home. Each item gets a spread of lovely close-up photos butted together and then a spread with a head on shot on the left and each right-hand page having relevant profile photos.Read more ›
Beautifully printed soft-cover book with thin board slip case. I have several books on Rams and Braun, but this one is almost certainly the best. The main focus here is on Rams with examples of his work for Braun and other companies. Beyond beautifully photographed examples of Braun classics, the book also looks at sketches, prototypes of unrealized products, and even engineering models for some items. Highly interesting with well-written text in English and German.
One of the best books I now own. Every design freak like me must have this. Simplicity is elegance was the thrust of his work, and nowhere have I seen it taken to these levels. His work has obviously influenced many in his field. It's easy to see the influence in apple's design, for example. Buy this book. Uncluttered, beautiful design at your fingertips.