Peter Saville: ‘Thinkers’ and ‘Doers’

Peter Saville

Brett Wickens and I painfully buckled down to the reality of communication design as a profession and began to operate in the normal practice of—client, audience—and shaping the message from the client to the audience. And I didn’t like it.

Over the past decade we are only just beginning to see proper partnerships between business minds and designers within the context of design companies. They are beginning to get together and starting to think: “Hmm, maybe we can help each other.”

Now, I’ve seen how to do it, and if needs must, I can do it, but I don’t wish to do it. I don’t actually wish to practice design to manipulate audiences. But of course that’s the job now. There is no ideology in business except profitability. That is businesses ideology. That is businesses raison d’étre—to make money. It’s not the business world’s raison d’étre to change the world or make it better.


Designer Peter Saville discusses his views with DESIGNerd on on the evolution of the graphic design industry while also questioning the role of truth in branding. 
This interview is featured in Open Manifesto #4, which focuses on the theme ‘Propaganda’.

Coincidentally, I stumbled upon this past lecture (above) at the Architectural Association School of Architecture London as he elaborates on this topic combined with some of the highlights of his career.