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Interview for CIID88 at Design Shanghai

March 14, 2015

I was interviewed by Eva Yan for a China International Interior Design Network (CIID88) podcast this week. Here are a couple of extracts from that interview:

It is very easy to make things perfect now. Modern manufacturing guarantees consistency and flawless perfection. So the goal that craftsmen have striven for for centuries is no longer really a great achievement.

But humans make things imperfect. People have moods and emotions, and this makes their work unpredictable.

So I am going to change your question slightly, and say that the most difficult challenge is in changing our expectations and aims. I am seeking a sort of controlled imperfection. I want to create work which communicates and connects people through all of those little human things: mistakes and accidents. In this context there is no longer a line between making and using, where the work is only perfect for the brief time that it is in the showroom, carefully wrapped in protective film. Creation is an ongoing thing – it is every scratch and stain that happens through use. This is something that I have discovered through working with antiques: the most interesting antiques are not perfectly preserved pieces, but are the ones mottled with blemishes which tell you all of the stories of people who have interacted with them.

在如今,想要把事物完美化非常容易。现代制造业为一致性和无暇的完美品提供了保证。所以,工匠们几个世纪以来所奋斗的已经算不上什么真正的伟大杰作。

但是,人往往会制造一些不完美的事情。人们拥有心境和情绪,这使得我们的作品赋有不可知性。

所以,我想稍微改变一下你的问题,应该是这样,最困难的挑战存在于如何改变我们的期望和目标。我在不断寻找一种能被控制住的不完美。我想要创造一些能通过那些所有人性中存在的过失和意外来与人们进行沟通、产生勾连的作品。在这种情况下,制造和使用之间的界限就不复存在了,完美品将会成为一个短时期的象征被摆放在陈列室里,用保护薄膜小心地包裹着。创造是一个进行时的东西——它是使用过程中发生的每一道抓痕和污迹。这是我在研究古董时体会到的心得:最有意思的古董并不是那些被保存得非常完好的,而是那些带有污点杂色的、能对观赏者讲故事的。

 

The customer I have in mind when I create is simply a reflection of me – someone who shares my sense of humour and enjoys a bit of absurdity. Clearly my customer has to be independent minded – there is no celebrity-endorsed label to give someone access to a big established club; so my clients are independent-minded and confident in their taste and judgement.

当我在创作这件作品的时候,我心里想象的理想消费群众可以简单地描述成是我的倒影——那些跟我有一样的幽默感,懂得享受一丝荒谬的人。无疑,我的消费者必须有独立的思想——不是说只有贴着明星代言标签的人才能进入一个成型的市场;所以我的客户是可以独立思考、对自己品味和判断保持自信的人。

 

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