California Designing Freedom and Influence on Contemporary Design – How did California come to have such a powerful influence on contemporary design? This book explores how the ideals of the 1960s counterculture morphed into the tech culture of Silicon Valley, and how ‘Designed in California’ became a global phenomenon.

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The central premise is that California has pioneered tools of personal liberation, from LSD to surfboards and iPhones. This ambitious survey brings together political posters and portable devices, but also looks beyond hardware to explore how user interface designers in the San Francisco Bay Area are shaping some of our most common daily experiences. By turns empowering, addictive and troubling, Californian products have affected our lives to such an extent that in some ways we are all now Californians.

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Lavishly illustrated, California: Designing Freedom features essays by leading experts in the field, such as Barry M Katz and Louise Sandhaus, as well as interviews with key designers and thinkers, including Fred Turner, Kevin Kelly and April Greiman. It also features a rediscovered lecture by Steve Jobs, introduced by Apple’s chief design officer, Jonathan Ive.

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Justin McGuirk is a writer and curator based in London. He is the chief curator at the Design Museum and the head of Design Curating & Writing at Design Academy Eindhoven. He has been the director of Strelka Press, the design critic of The Guardian, and the editor of Icon magazine. In 2012 he was awarded the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture for an exhibition he curated with Urban Think Tank. His book Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture is published by Verso.

Brendan McGetrick is an independent writer, editor, and designer. His work has appeared in publications in over twenty countries, including Wired, Art Review, Domus, and Vogue Nippon. His projects include the books MAD Dinner (Actar), Urban China: Work In Progress (Timezone 8), and Who is Architecture? (Domus/Timezone 8). In 2011, he curated Unnamed Design, a component of the 2011 Gwangju Design Biennale, in collaboration with Ai Weiwei. In 2014, he co-curated Fair Enough in the Russian pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale. From 2002 to 2006 he was head writer at the research studio AMO.

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