Send to

Bangle’s animal spirits

Sept. 20, 2012 - 23:03 By Korea Herald
Design might in the near future be leveraged to engage those who feel left out of the global marketplace, stave off riots and even prevent the dispossessed from committing terrorism.

If that sounds near-impossible, you may be a “three-headed dog.”

These are two of the design concepts explored by Chris Bangle, the man whose innovative designs have been described as “flame surfacing” and who may very well have been the first to adapt the literary theory of deconstructivism to auto design.

Bangle extolled the virtues of the creative process in a discussion session called “Design Storming” during the first day of the 2nd annual Herald Design Forum on Thursday at COEX InterContinental Hotel in Seoul.

In his one-hour talk, Bangle imbued creative personalities and the challenges to creative thinking with animals ―everyday ones and mythical ones ― to explain his unique approach to commercial design.

“Minatuars,” Bangle said, are the creatures that can trap your design team in the “labyrinth” of the design process. “Three-headed dogs” are nay-sayers who put unnecessary limits on designers. “Centaurs” are those super-unconventional types who can’t work well in teams or look too nerdy to lead a production team, but hold amazing design secrets within.

Bangle, naturally, is a centaur, he said, only half-jokingly.

In case you think such talk is a lot of artsy hogwash, think again.

Bangle is credited with changing how engineers at BMW manufacture the intricately curved surfaces of his automotive designs. BMW had to even develop a new technology ― 3-D panel-pressing allowing a single press for compound curves, which had previously needed multiple pressings unless the panel was shaped by hand.

By Philip Iglauer (