Immersing yourself in an archive filled with the work of designers Massimo and Lella Vignelli on a daily basis is only a dream for many, but for Josh Owen, this is his new reality. The Director of Rochester Institute of Technology’s industrial design program was recently named the new director of the institute’s Vignelli Center for Design Studies, where he will be in charge of mapping out the future of the center and creating new programming to educate the public about the importance of design. Owen succeeds the Vignelli Center’s founding director Roger Remington whom he has worked
London-based Blast Studio collects coffee waste that they then mix with the roots of fungi – mycelium – to turn objects created by humans into unique pieces that are eventually transformed by urban waste. The designs of their Objects from Nature come from nature’s geometric shapes, and create micro-climate pockets that capture humidity and protect the organisms as they grown.
Inspired by ecosystems, the mix of materials is 3D printed into the objects themselves and the fungi naturally grows to form a smooth, soft skin that serves to solidify the piece. Along the way it creates unpredictable patterns and colors
This week’s Milkshake guest is François Nguyen, Design Director at frog. François is based in Brooklyn and oversees the industrial design practice across frog North America. His career spans nearly two decades working with clients such as Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook. He was even the lead designer for the original Beats Studio headphones for Dr. Dre during his time at Ammunition. In this interview, François discusses frog’s unique workplace culture, the challenges industrial designers will face in the next 5-10 years and his passion for music. Watch the episode:
While overseeing industrial design at frog, François has led
Caitlin Ellen and Phantila Phataraprasit founded Sabai Design (Sabai is the Thai word for “comfortable” or “cozy”) when they spotted a gap in the market for a sofa that looked good, aligned with their sustainability values, and was affordable enough for someone setting up a home for the first time. They launched two sofas and an ottoman with a range of fabric options (the velvet is made from 100% recycled PET bottles) and a ‘closed-loop promise’, which guarantees they will buy back their sofas (from New York customers, at 20% cost, within three years of purchase) to keep them out
Designed by Dutch duo Visser & Meijwaard, the lyn collection uses spatial relations to create a shelf that’s the absolute minimum for pulpo. That absolute minimum turned out to be doorless glass cubes that appear to float within an elegant metal frame depending on lighting and perspective. Made of float glass and powder-coated steel, the lyn collection embraces bubbles, streaks, and other variations as part of the production process, making each piece all the more individual. Choose from two sizes – small and high – as well as a range of vibrant color combinations.
Expanding on their Future Heritage Collection, Poltrona Frau has reissued the Kyoto Table by Gianfranco Frattini, perfectly merging a design-forward idea with master craftsmanship. The architect and designer took a trip to Japan in the early 70s to study with local craftsmen in Kyoto and it was there that he became inspired by their processing techniques and aesthetics. That inspiration resulted in the Kyoto Table’s joint and name, which led to the table going into production in 1974. Now, Poltrona Frau has brought the table back with the help of new artisans who benefit from Italian woodcrafting traditions in