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Designer of the Week: Robert van EmbricqsThursday 21 September 2017
Designer of the Week: Robert van Embricqs. The Dutch designer is fascinated by the aesthetically pleasing, yet intricate complexity of the natural form. Finding inspiration for his designs in bone structure, plant life, and movement, one question remained ever present: ‘To what degree is the object you’re creating capable of dictating its own design?’ This led him to develop a minimalistic design approach that can best be described as a collaboration between designer and the used material.
The work of van Embricqs is not only aesthetically pleasing, it also creates an interaction with the user because of the movement between the flat and 3D form. The Rising Chair concept was so well-received that Van Embricqs decided to put this into production, in addition, to create other similar pieces of furniture, including side tables, bowls, and lamps.
With his designs for furniture Van Embricqs starts out by making small incisions on a flat surface, then sits back to watch and study the reaction to the new shape it is able to assume by rising the structure. An important aspect of his design process is Van Embricqs’ conscious focus on marrying functionality with an aesthetically pleasing look. The design formula for every project Van Embricqs works on can be subscribed as a combination of functionality and art.
During the designing of the pieces, Van Embricqs his intentions were certainly not to design handy flat-pack furniture but the idea to give the material the opportunity to transform itself. What sets apart the Rising Furniture line is the fact that the products can always revert to their base form.
Aside from continuing his furniture line, van Embricqs establishes flexible concepts on a bigger scale in which movement creates interaction between the users and the architecture. He focused his attention on finding new ways to adapt the techniques he developed for his interior solutions. A series of sun-regulating designs for indoor skylights, in which a construction opens and closes depending on the amount of light that shines indoor. These constructions can be used as light sources during the night.
Other design concepts van Embricqs is working on are the garden pavilions that can be dramatically influenced by the weather conditions in which light, water and wind make the construction change its behavior. Van Embricqs his target group are primarily people that value his work as art objects with a specific function that respects its surroundings.
In regards to advice he gives to other designers, Robert Van Embricqs highlights certain points that one must pay attention that are rather useful, “Try to disconnect yourself from designing a useful product and take a step back in finding your fascination. You can finally share this fascination with the user, translated into the shape of the product. Try to enjoy the design process and include the user in your mindset. Design must radiate purity and honesty.”
His design approach gave him several awards for its Rising Collection including the Red Dot Design Award for Best Concept and Wood-challenge in the Netherlands, both Audience & Jury price. The Rising Chair became part of the National Centre for Visual Art in France and the Rising Table has been awarded the Fubiz award 3rd prize.
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Source: Robert van Embricqs