James Lee:What do you think about oriental beauty in your life?
I think, for me, having spent the last 10 or 12 years in Asia I've been fortunate enough to see the nature , the natural materials from China, as well as the technology, so for me I consider myself extremely lucky because I've learned to appreciate materials like bamboo and what you can do with this type of- what they actually bring to the human senses, but also what technology has done to bring human senses, so that's an incredible richness of history in Asia, in China, for construction techniques, for traditional craft, so yeah ,it's a very inspiring country.
Have you ever used something you like from China to do your project?
I think one of the most inspiring things I've done recently was design some lighting using natural bamboo for a company called Zen sense and not only did the bamboo lend itself very naturally to be used as a item, it was also for young consumers so they could appreciate the culture of bamboo in society and what it means to China as a natural material. So it was very optimistic。
we always think about the shape, the Form, they are good to be first thing think about .how about you ,as an industrial designer. What you think about the form, the shape of your concept, Which one comes first?
you know, Form and function is a very complex universe. So, for example, when you design a speaker, the function dictates the form because the sound comes out in a certain way, so you have less room to play with materials because there's a reality to performance in the product. And when it comes to form, we very much like to appreciate the nature of the material and how far we can push it industrially because form is inspired by culture, because culture is your target consumer. So I think we have a very open mind towards form. But also the other thing, we like to play with technology a lot, and create something that's fresh on the market, not just traditional, pushing the boundaries of design, as new generations of consumers or younger people start to look for new ideas.
I have seen your work. you have “raw” and “tech” if you check your style, can you talk about the “raw” and “tech”
Yes, I think the concept really of 'raw' and 'tech' has always been important to us because we're very inspired by Asian industry and factories but if we make it too technical it becomes dehumanized because the human soul needs warmth and tactility. So we tend to have an approach where whilst we do use technical processes, we make sure the project has a very human resonance and that it's emotionally compelling as a material or tactility that connects spiritually to the person using it.
Yangmeixhu Street Public Toilets
Because I think the raw and high tech are sort of opposites. How could you get those two on the same level or same page?
Oh, I think society has done that to itself, because, you know, a lot of people are forced to use technology, but generally technology is something which is very smart. It's very tidy, it's very square, it's got a very good surface, but most human beings can't look like a computer because they wear clothes and get dirty, they have creases, some people have money but they don't want to look so rich. So I think there's definitely a level of consumer that likes to have a sense of roughness around the product.
Have you ever done something just for happiness, not for some real reason, just for happy
yeah ,I tend to try to live my life to do things for happy reasons.But I think you know ,Happiness is a strange word because when you're working for a client,you are trying to ,make them happy, make their business happy .When I do things to make myself happy, I design something because it's got my heart in it,but I think the happiest designs tend to be for - art galleries, for charity, where you have a lot of freedom of imagination, less restrict ,so we working on the next machine in Los Angeles with materials and factories in China and this is a hard work .but I'm happy.
So, does any of your work reflects the meaning of serendipity?
I think. yeah, I’ll use this word serendipity, it's a good word because every day is full of surprises,and.so you know, everything that happens in life is like creating waves and ripples in the surface. And I think that’s totally amazing design magic, people’s Imaginations and meeting new people and you know, designers should not be independent thinkers in the sense of egotism, I think If designers help each other and create community, of course design needs a vision from one person, but you know, all designers have to admit that they love to look at other people's work and everyone is inspired by everything.
TRUSSARDI FACADE CONCEPT DESGIN
but how does serendipity turn into creativity? Cause serendipity is a lifestyle, but creativity is how we work.
Well, I think every time we get a project we put our energy into the things that are inspiring us each day and becomes the end product, so it’s quite straightforward...If I have to Design a chair, I meet someone who's got a factory, you know ,in Changsha who's making some beautiful bamboo, maybe one day I’ll remember this and give him a call
what you find in art and design - what is the difference between art and design? Because some people say that design is more the technique, but art is more like emotional.
when you're a young design student, you have to decide very early if you're a designer or an artist, Design has the purpose of creating economy and making people, giving people atmosphere of surroundings. Art is about creating concepts only. Art is just about concept Sometimes it can be about money, sometimes it doesn't have to be about money. But that is a very difference. Design cannot only be conceptual, because otherwise it will lose its sense of purpose and the reason design exists is to serve human functionality, for human use.
For myself, I think art is more like a dream, and design is more like, I wake up in the morning, I have to think about something. So, I think that art for me is more like my heart, to feel something, design is more like my brain, to think something. inside and out.