“The body is more honest. And at this kind of basic level, all people are the
same. So that’s why when you’re designing for mass production, the designer
should focus more on what the body knows.” – Naoto Fukasawa
Naoto Fukasawa was born in Yamanashi, Japan, in 1956 and graduated from Tama Art University in 1980. His career began at Seiko Epson, where he designed products such as wrist TVs and mini printers using micro-technology.
In 1996, Fukasawa opened IDEO’s Tokyo office. In addition to acting as a design consultant to many major Japanese companies, he also held a series of workshops for young designers called “without thought.” The idea behind them, says Fukasawa, “is that people think that design is something that appeals to their emotions, but in fact people are linked to things every day in their environments, unconsciously, without even being aware of it. This ‘unthinking’ state makes actions smooth. Whereas, if we think closely about what we’re doing, our actions become awkward or wooden. Designs that make us feel this kind of simplicity don’t stand out, but entwine with people’s actions and with the environment, too.”
In 2003, he established Naoto Fukasawa Design. Fukasawa still enjoys working with young designers and currently teaches or lectures at several institutions, including Musashino Art University, Tama Art University, and Tokyo University Graduate School.