It’s no secret that I love curated recommendations and content–I like the hit of insight you get into someone when you ask for their recommendations. That’s also the model behind companies like Quarterly, and that yen to get a look into the way someone thinks is behind the new talks series I’m organizing, the Creative Somerville Series. When a book that’s recommended to me moves me, I feel like I’m getting a little more in touch with what it is to be truly human–and at some level, I’ve connected with the humanity of the person who recommended the book to me in the first place.
What’s interesting about these lists is that they are a mix of different book types. For sure, you have designers recommending classic ‘designer’ books such as Delirious New York by Rem Koolhaas, a Jeanne Gang pick, but you also have fiction, philosophy and everything in between. Top on Victoria Meyers’s list is a book by the Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living whose calming voice she charmingly compares to that of Warren Buffet.
That’s the other great thing about this site–it’s not just a bunch of book lists–many of the designers include a line or two about why they chose the book. While being in the business of creativity can have it’s downsides, with the passion of creativity getting buried under issues of production, this site can’t help but remind me that at the core, being involved with creative pursuits is about participating in the things that make human life richer.