Thorsten Franck’s obsession is domestic furniture. ‘I am inspired by DIY objects so I tried to transfer that easy way of assembling pieces to my own collection,’ he says. For the show he has created a series of stools, tables, benches, coat racks and hookstands which function as moveable pieces in the household jigsaw. All the pieces replicate in one way or another an initial idea, while the materials range from beech plywood, sycamore and maple to linoleum and aluminium, reflecting his attention to the tactile aspect of furniture design. Although German born, his attitude towards simplified design is more Scandinavian, and the vision at work is clear and understated. ‘As a designer,’ he claims, ‘you always have a choice; you can influence the way people are living [or choose not to]. I prefer designs which are not so loud, that support everyday life, that make you smile.’ At the RCA he has also learnt to question and to think a bit harder about ‘what the object is about’. He appreciates the variety that comes from having different teachers and the different approaches to design: ‘One tutor would be for the theatrical side of design, while another would be for the functional. It shows there isn’t just one way.’
Offthetopofmyhead’s founder and creative director says there’s no such thing as brand design and much of what the design industry says about brand is incomprehensible, pretentious and just plain daft.
The new store — conceived by design and architectural practice Gensler — has a gaming lounge, multi-purpose Community Theatre and a McLaren sports car on the ground floor.
From vegan vending machines to zero plastic takeaways, the food industry is finding inventive solutions to its plastic problem.