One of the most heartening things about last night’s Royal Designers ceremony was that Sir Terence Conran finally joined that elevated throng.
For years, his entrepreneurialism has reportedly gone against him with members of the Faculty of RDI’s. Pure design talent and exemplary craft skills are what they have hitherto revered, rather than the creativity involved in building design-led retail and restaurant empires as Conran has done.
But at last the eminent members appear to have acknowledged that he is no slouch when it comes to design and craft either, with an eye for beauty and detail, particularly in 3D design, few can hope to surpass. So well done, Terence. It’s an honour so hugely deserved and the RDIs are enriched by it.
On another note, it’s good too to see a couple of architects – and a services engineer -becoming RDIs this year. Peter Clegg of Bath-based practice Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios is a pioneer of Green building design, as, indeed, is Patrick Bellow of services consultancy Atelier Ten. Ted Cullinan is meanwhile, a cult hero among architects and received the RoyaI Institute of british Architects’ Royal Gold Medal for lifetime achievement a couple of years ago.
Tbhis more rounded approach to design, crossing professional boundaries is most welcome. It reflects the way the world is going and shows foresight and generosity of spirit among the RDIs.