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New, in-depth BBC documentary explores the creativity behind everyday design;
As seen on the Smithsonian Channel

Debuts on DVD from Athena March 29, 2011

"Elegant history of design"—The Daily Telegraph
"Fascinating"—The Times
"Brilliant, insightful"—The Guardian

Silver Spring, MD — Fun, fast-paced and always informative, The Genius of Design debuts on DVD from Athena on March 29, 2011, exploring the personalities and technology that shape our modern life. From the creators of the award-winning series The Genius of Photography and broadcast on the Smithsonian Channel in fall 2010, this in-depth BBC documentary series celebrates the discipline that shapes the world’s environment, economy, and culture and traces the history of design from the Industrial Revolution to the present. With spotlights on industrial design giants, such as Braun electronics, Ford, and Apple, this fascinating five-part documentary examines the art and science of design and the stuff it shapes –- from computer chips to cityscapes and everything in between (DVD 2-vol., 5 episodes, $49.99,

For industrial designers, the world is never enough. They give shape and texture to the world to make it livable—indeed, beautiful—for the rest of us. See the evolution from artisans’ workshops to industrial mass production, and the profound changes it has wrought in our economy, society, and environment. Meet historians, critics, and legendary contemporary designers, including Dieter Rams (Braun electronics), J Mays (Ford), and Jonathan Ive (Apple), who reveal the thinking behind iconic products such as the VW Beetle, the Eames chair, and the computer desktop. Along the way, discover how design has influenced even the outcome of war.

Episode 1: Ghosts in the Machine
Episode 2: Designs for Living
Episode 3: Blueprints for War
Episode 4: Better Living Through Chemistry
Episode 5: Objects of Desire


  • 12-page viewer’s guide with articles on the parties at the Bauhaus, changing American road signs, Ford’s eco-friendly factor, and a gallery of famous design flops
  • Biographical sketches of influential designers, plus discussion questions and more deginer biographies and famous flops at
Street Date: March 29, 2011
SRP: $49.99
DVD 2-Vol. Boxed Set – 5 Episodes - Approx. 242 minutes - SDH Subtitles

Athena releases provide an authoritative and entertaining learning experience through high quality, informative, non-fiction programming. Athena’s releases include Discovering Hamlet, The Adventure of English, Playing Shakespeare, The Story of Math, Hitler’s Bodyguard, Genius of Britain, Testament, World War I in Color, Testament, as well as programs from Mike Wallace and Bill Moyers. Clips are available at Athena’s DVD sets are available from select retailers, catalog companies, and direct from Acorn at (888) 870-8047 or

Press Contact (screeners, box art/stills and interviews):
Chad Campbell, Acorn Media, 301.608.2115 ext. 138,

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