Ruida Si: Visual Philosophy: Thoughts on I and We


by Ruida Si

A charming but clear-eyed manifesto for a new era of “we” in the face of ecological collapse

This small but substantial pocket-size book is an attempt to think through life and the universe in graphic-design terms. With concise drawings and brief texts, Chinese illustrator and designer Ruida Si quietly shows humanity in the grip of a dawning realization about its own collectivity. Facing the imminent collapse of the ecosystem, humanity must prepare to replace “I” with “we”—“we” defined in a utopian spirit as a subject transcending generations and individuals.

At first glance, the visuals are as simple and clear as those of a children’s picture book, but they are the product of Si’s extensive and sophisticated knowledge of information, pattern and rhythm, and deliver her message with tremendous clarity and simplicity. Muji art director Kenya Hara, with whom Si studied, provides a foreword.

Paperback| 304 pages | D.A.P. Artbook| 2022

Kenya Hara is a Japanese graphic designer, curator and writer, and a professor at Musashino Art University. Hara is one of the leading designers in Japan and his books “Designing Design” and “White” are recognized as essential for anyone studying design theory and aesthetics. Hara has been the art director of Muji since 2001, and designed the opening and closing ceremony programs of the Nagano Winter Olympic Games 1998.

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