Porsche Unseen: future perfect
When Porsche’s chief designer Michael Mauer considers the style language of tomorrow, he first has to look much further ahead.
Today What will a designer come up with tomorrow? It’s a designer’s job to look beyond the here and now towards the future – more or less constantly. Study how designers think, and you will find that they are not really living in the present, but are already a step ahead. It’s true in general, and particularly for designers in the automobile industry.
So how do designers recognise what will constitute the contemporary lines of tomorrow?
The day after tomorrow
The day after tomorrow, an era that lies at least 30 years in the future, is attained in a designer’s mind by looking at developments and considering how these – when taken to an extreme conclusion – could shape the day after tomorrow. Perfect 3D holograms, for example, that could make it possible to travel any distance in the blink of an eye.
It’s not a question of being just a bit of a visionary; you have to be unrestrained, absolutist, a radical. Doug Chiang, head designer of Star Wars, has perfected this mechanism.
“Porsche Unseen” provides a glimpse of unreleased concept cars
Tomorrow By now, designers ought to be very familiar with tomorrow. In order to do their job and move from the visionary to the concrete – in other words, to define the very concrete shape that will fit perfectly into the brand image and the evolutionary spirit of the times in four to six years’ time – Porsche designers need to become lateral and longitudinal thinkers. This means first ensuring the logical continuation of what already exists and shaping what is beautiful into what is perfect. But just when they have created the highest degree of visual perfection from today’s point of view, designers break this by adding a precisely composed dissonance. Near-perfect beauty was embodied for many years by the Chanel model Claudia Schiffer. That’s why we designers also add a contradiction to our perfect ideal. It’s contrast that makes charisma: perfection plus contradiction. A good designer can do this quite intuitively – because designers often think far in advance, but never in a straight line.
Michael Mauer: a visionary
As someone born in the summer, he has long been fascinated by open-top cars. His favourite sports activities take him to the mountains, on skis or a mountain bike – but his thoughts always remain in the future.
Nov 17, 2020 at 22:36