The McDonough Conversations: Endless is More

In the latest installment of The McDonough Conversations, Joel Makower and William McDonough discuss the history of sustainable design and how the concept “endless is more” will affect the future of design. Here is an excerpt from the discussion:

Makower: How does this change the design process?

McDonough: If I design something to come apart, it is likely to go together more easily. Because if I have to take apart an appliance or something and I design it to come apart, then often I’ll have clipped it together and fixed it with a screw where I need it, but the other pieces are just locking into each other, held together by one screw because it’s much faster.

Makower: What’s do you want a business person to take away from this conversation?

McDonough: Go back to the fundamentals of the design question. Yes, form follows function, but look at where it came from — an architect, Louis Sullivan, who gloried in the beautiful forms of nature. So I would say take that away: It’s not just utility; it’s beauty. It’s not just Aristotle and truth in number; it’s also Plato and truth in form and culture and beauty. Let’s design things that are both functional and beautiful — that are both useful and give us wonderment. That would be one takeaway.

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Read previous issues of The McDonough Conversations here.