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The esteemed 10 2023 | Multidisciplinary Designers

  • Discover the multi-disciplinary names to know in 2023.

    The esteemed 10 recognises influential voices in the multi-disciplinary design and architecture community in 2023. Criterion based on approach, current achievements and completed and anticipated projects.

    This piece originally appeared in est Magazine Issue #47.

    Proudly supported by Winnings

    Sabine Marcellis

    Designer

    Rotterdam, The Netherlands

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    Nature

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    How do you approach and apply colour with each project? The answer: intuition based on knowledge and experience.

    Three words that most appropriately sum up my approach to design are:

    Essence, materiality, wonder.

    What key influence can we anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    Nature again! More specifically, West Coast American nature.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Work hard, play hard, rest hard (on repeat).

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    The lighting. Lighting temperature, location and type hugely impact a space. It’s the key and can make or break the way a space is experienced.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    Materiality – smart materials and endlessly recyclable materials.

    Sabine Marcellis

    Henry Wilson

    Designer

    Sydney, Australia

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    Flea markets and industrial manufacturing plants.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    How will it age? I always direct them to the bronze and brass details of the Sydney Opera house for reference.

    Three words that most appropriately sum up our approach to design are:

    Ancient materials, modern languages.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    The Australian landscape is what predominantly influences my work – in its multiformity and in the singular qualities of its light. Nothing remains perfect in Australian conditions, and I believe weathering is to be accepted and valued.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Explore manufacturing, that’s the crux of it.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    Downlights – I’m yet to be convinced they are required.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    I’m interested in the imperfect beauty that comes from objects made by hand, and in the creation of pieces that retain a sense of individual charm while not compromising the robust framework required for manufacture. Further, it matters that the work endures; well-made things last, and I see longevity as one of the simpler forms of sustainability we can hope to achieve as contemporary designers.

    Emmanuelle Simon

    Designer

    Paris, France

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, an antiquary city in the South of France, known for its large number of antiques and antique stores.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    What’s your age?

    Three words that most appropriately sum up our approach to design are:

    Serenity, elegance, nature.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    The Balearic Islands’ crafts/artisans.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    To persevere and not forget that the original ideas, thoughts, and concepts are normally the best.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    The natural light source in the room.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    For me, a better world is in search of serenity/calm. For interior architecture, it’s about designing harmonious places, fluid spaces, or where people create beautiful memories. Design pieces should last for a long time, that we don’t get tired of, that are not subject to a trend, combined with natural materials that improve with time.

    Volker Haug Studio

    Director Volker Haug

    Melbourne, Australia

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    Our team hails from all over the world, and with Australia being a comparatively remote island we all crave travel for both inspiration and respite. We are fortunate enough to be able to regularly visit design fairs in Europe and are planning a U.S. tour this year.

    The one thing people always ask me is…

    How did you get started as a lighting designer? I started making quite experimental lighting out of my garage at home.

    Three words that most appropriately sum up our approach to design are:

    Refined, spirited, touch-of-the-maker.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    Material ingenuity. Our latest series und Messing was partly inspired by the scarcity of materials during the pandemic. We started looking at glass scraps from television screens, discarded metal offcuts, and other bits for refuse. und Messing was introduced with brass as its core material, but the series is meant to set a stage for future material pairings. We’ve also brought in fibreglass as a counterpart to the brass, and we’re interested in introducing other metals.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Follow your quirks. Your creative vision will evolve with time, but your inclinations, however out-of-the-box, are precisely what gives your work its unique flavour and keeps people intrigued.

    Portrait Pier Carthew Photography Pier Carthew

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    We always have our eye on the lighting – we love to see how natural and decorative lighting work together to create a specific atmosphere.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    We have always loved working with local manufacturers, and it’s now more important to us than ever. Supporting and helping to sustain the local industry are natural and important characteristics of this local-mindedness.

    Volker Haug Studio

    Photography by Pier Carthew

    Photography by Pier Carthew

    Fiona Lynch Office

    Director Fiona Lynch

    Melbourne, Australia

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    Melbourne’s NGV, London’s V&A Museum, MoMA in New York and walking in nature – be it mountains or beachside, as nature has some incredible design – the perfect example of form and function.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    Would you create this concept in your own home? (Yes of course I would.)

    Three words that most appropriately sum up our approach to design are:

    Raw, refined, timeless.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    Complex yet refined materiality, layered tactility and colour.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    The light.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you?

    It means thinking about the footprint we leave, the lifecycle of our designs and the materials we use.

    Fiona Lynch

    Edition Office

    Directors Kim Bridgland and Aaron Roberts

    Melbourne, Australia

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    There are many sources collating and curating exceptional designs these days across digital, print and local exhibitions, where we understand design in its particular contextual relationship with place and its cultural references.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    How do you make a building with no roof gutters?

    Three words that most appropriately sum up my our approach to design are:

    Effortless simplicity from complexity.

    What key influence can we anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    Scale. Testing and transitioning the thinking and methodologies which have proven successful on smaller scale works into much larger projects clarify the kinds of experiential, formal and material gestures that work for us at much larger scale. You can also anticipate everything recycled, locally sourced and circular – mass timber, Cross Lam, earth bricks, and biomaterials such as Mycelium flooring.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Stay hungry to question and understand design – as a way of clarifying your own position on project; does it do the things it has set out to do? What insights are there, and how might this change your perception of the work?

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    How the space makes us feel. We are conscious of this and recognise that an empathetic basis to design goes a long way to understanding our behaviours within designed environments.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    Designing in a way that promotes diversity and inclusivity – in architecture and urban design. We believe it is also important that architecture can reflect this diversity in its physical identity; how it’s read in the public realm. We must also strive for carbon neutrality and circularity in operation and construction.

    Edition Office

    CASTS by Edition Office | Photography by Annika Kafcaloudis

    Olivia Bossy

    Designer

    Sydney, Australia

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    Deep into a very specific image archive. I love it when someone has mastered something useful and that’s all they make, like cage crinolines or ancient vegetable cutters. And the Opera House because every detail is beautiful.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    What’s your training? (None, making it up)

    Three words that most appropriately sum up my approach to design are:

    It might work.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    I can’t imagine it being one particular thing and I certainly don’t plan it that way. It could be a phone box one week and a cheese grater the next. That’s why I find my work skips all over the place although people do tell me I have a ‘style’.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Schlep down your own path and come at it sideways. Financially it won’t make sense for a while and people may not get it but then things will hopefully fall into place and you will be doing exactly what you love.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    Who’s in it and what are they doing.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    Doing it with some humour and empathy. I also think mediocrity is dangerous because it feeds into the mindless consumption of what is considered ‘of the moment’ but those things become disposable and design has to be more than that when the world is on fire. Making things well, with good people, listening and maybe asking ‘why’ along the way seems like a good place to start. And the whole ‘I need it now’ mentality has to stop, it’s just furniture.

    Photography by Tom Ross

    Photography by Traianos Pakioufakis

    Olivia Bossy

    Nicolas Schuybroek Architects

    Director Nicolas Schuybroek

    Brussels, Belgium

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    A wide array of locations, too long to list, ranging from galleries, temporary exhibitions, and museums but also clients and private collections.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    How old are you, actually?

    Three words that most appropriately sum up my approach to design are:

    Tactile, raw, elegant.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    An evolution in the project content and types, scales and locations. Raw and refined materials with a soul. Our signature kitchen in tin for Obumex is certainly a good example.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Go with the long-term vision, always.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    The proportions and overall balance of the room as a whole.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    Designs that are content-driven and impactful in the noblest sense.

    Nicolas Schuybroek x When Objects Work | Photography by Eric Petschek

    Note Design Studio

    Founders Johannes Carlström and Cristiano Pigazzini

    Stockholm, Sweden

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    Good design is everywhere; in nature, in everyday objects, and the most exceptional art galleries. But if I have to point out one single situation, I’ll say the art school graduate exhibitions; there’s a sense of optimism and so many new ideas.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    Where do you get your inspiration?

    Three words that most appropriately sum up our approach to design are:

    Unexpected, distinct, responsible.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    We need optimism after the pandemic, in the middle of a crazy war in Europe, and a shaky financial market. More optimism for a better future through innovation and development. This can be applied to design – from colours, shapes, and environments – to the very down-to-earth aesthetic we have seen in the past.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    Set a goal, be ambitious, find your style, and believe in that. Don’t look too much at what others do.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    Whether the space can evoke an emotion. There is no efficiency without emotion.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you in 2023?

    As designers, we need more than ever to think about our work, how we influence the company working for us, and the people using our products or living in our spaces. Designing for a better world means designing not for today but for the future. Always asking ourselves the “why?” in any new design.

    The &Tradition Alima Trolley

    The Best Western Grow Hotel Stockholm by Note Design Studio | Photography by Jonas Lindstrom

    Johannes, Sanna, Cristiano and Kristoffer from Note Design Studio

    Colin King

    Stylist + Artistic Director Colin King

    New York City, North America

    Where do you go to appreciate exceptional design?

    For design, I usually go to books. Intimate, residential, lived-in spaces are where I find the most inspiration. Some of the most influential rooms of all time only exist in a book. I take my job very seriously because most people can only share and experience other people’s work from photographs – we can rarely tour these private spaces freely.

    The one thing people always ask me is:

    How do you style bookshelves?

    Three words that most appropriately sum up our approach to design are:

    Nature, dance, collaboration.

    What is a key influence that we can anticipate seeing in projects you are yet to release?

    A key influence in my upcoming projects is art and nature. When creating still life, I reference old masters, and when creating contemporary products, I look to the forms in nature. Art and nature inform my exploration of colour combinations, object relationships, light and shadows, and the nuances of textiles and compositions.

    What is the one piece of advice you would share with a young designer?

    A Pablo Picasso quote comes to mind; “Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.” My advice would be to create – don’t wait for the job, the right time, or inspiration – just create and keep moving. I learn everything worth knowing from doing, including making mistakes.

    When you walk into a room, what is the first thing you always notice about a space?

    The light. Whether during the day or at night, a room can only be experienced with an attention to light.

    What does designing for a better world mean to you?

    To unite memories, feelings, and fantasies, to succeed in creating atmospheres that make us feel good.

    Colin King

    Imagery courtesy of Beni Rugs

    Imagery courtesy of Beni Rugs

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