Thursday, January 25, 2007


While reviewing a design today, I was reminded of the concept of wabi-sabi.

I'd read about it a few years ago at Signal vs Noise:
The simplicity of wabi-sabi is best described as the state of grace arrived at by a sober, modest, heartfelt intelligence…Usually this implies a limited palette of materials. It also means keeping conspicuous features to a minimum. But it doesn’t mean removing the invisible connective tissue that somehow binds the elements into a meaningful whole. It also doesn’t mean in any way diminishing something’s “interestingness”, the quality that compels us to look at that something over, and over, and over again.

A quick check at Wikipedia brought this lovely quote by Richard R. Powell:
It (wabi-sabi) nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.

(And yes, it makes me think of wasabi.)