Friday, November 4, 2011

Mona Simpson's eulogy.

I finally got around to reading Mona Simpson's eulogy of her brother, Steve Jobs. She delivered it at the Memorial Church of Stanford University and "The New York Times" printed the text last Sunday. You can read it here: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/30/opinion/mona-simpsons-eulogy-for-steve-jobs.html?src=me&ref=general

If you have the time, you should read Simpson's thoughts; they should take only about 10 minutes to get through but they'll give you things to think about for years.

There's a bit in the eulogy that got me thinking about so much of the bullshit we endure in advertising. Simpson calls it Jobs' philosophy of aesthetics.

“Fashion is what seems beautiful now but looks ugly later; art can be ugly at first but it becomes beautiful later.”

It's easy to see Jobs' philosophy at work in the advertising he and his agencies produced.

There is nothing fashionable, trendy or transitory about the art and commerce Jobs helped create. His ads are boring. They are most-often simply product shots or simple product demonstrations.

He eschewed advertising fashion. Conversations about brands. "Liking." And other whims.

He relied on the classics. Old typefaces. Simple design. An absence of fussiness.

That's all.

7 comments:

Tore Claesson said...

Thanks for pointing me (us) towards the eulogy. Whch I actually hadn't read before. Today I stood in a store weighing Walter Isaacson's Jobs biography but "resisted". I think I might go back and buy it.

dave trott said...

Tore,
Isaacson's bio is one of the best things I've read.
There are so many lessons in it, but it grips like fiction.
I'm reading it on an iPad (which seems appropriate).
It actually makes me look forward to my commute on the tube.

Anonymous said...

Best book isaascson wrote, much better than Einstein bio. Probably because he met w jobs over 49 times.

Tore Claesson said...

Dave, now I will definetely read it.

geo said...

I read the Einstein bio. Made me want to become a physicist.

Dinesh Bhadwal said...

What the fuck, they have put it on sale. But that doesn't mean that we Indians ain't Jobs' fans. I am going to buy it tonight.

Dinesh Bhadwal said...

...'sale' means that they are giving it free with two other books.