By the Num­bers

Azure - - CONTENTS -

Five il­lu­mi­nat­ing thoughts from light­ing mae­stro Ingo Mau­rer

“Sur­pris­ing and un­con­ven­tional. Con­tro­ver­sial. Free of res­trained think­ing and the bore­dom of ubiq­ui­tous, repet­i­tive de­signs.” Ingo Mau­rer’s de­scrip­tion of his new Luzy se­ries, launched this past April in Mi­lan, could just as eas­ily be ap­plied to the de­signer him­self. Re­call­ing ear­lier works such as Canned Light, which is based on a Camp­bell’s soup tin, Luzy is the lat­est of Mau­rer’s prod­ucts to give new life and sur­pris­ing whimsy to found ob­jects and fa­mil­iar forms – in this case a rub­ber glove. Azure caught up with the 86-year-old icon in Germany, just weeks be­fore the un­veil­ing. While he could only hint at what he was set to re­veal in Italy, he did of­fer some in­sight into just what makes one of the in­dus­try’s most in­ven­tive minds tick. IN­TER­VIEW _Erin Don­nelly On in­clud­ing the user in the de­sign process: I don’t want to be a dic­ta­tor. For in­stance, with the Zet­tel’z lamps [which in­volve the user hang­ing 80 sheets of pa­per from a metal frame], you’re my co-de­signer, and that’s what I’ve al­ways liked. But am I ever un­happy with the re­sults? Some­times I al­most get a heart at­tack. On judg­ing the work of young de­sign­ers: That’s a very dif­fi­cult thing. You re­ally do have to re­spect them, even if it’s wrong. They’re young peo­ple who want to make it; you can­not crush them, you know? It’s still a kind of fer­til­izer for young peo­ple, even if they haven’t suc­ceeded yet. On be­ing an in­spi­ra­tion to other cre­atives: If ever I’m dis­cour­aged, I just have to look around and see the in­flu­ence I’ve had in many ways. I’m proud to be a non-com­mer­cial com­pany that suc­ceeds. I think it’s amaz­ing what we do. On what keeps him go­ing af­ter more than half a cen­tury as a de­signer: My best tool is still my own mind; I still en­joy cre­at­ing at 86. De­sign is very im­por­tant work, but peo­ple be­come too se­ri­ous and too con­strained. I’m very much for con­tro­ver­sial dia­logues. His guid­ing prin­ci­ples: It’s im­por­tant to feel where the grass grows, and to have your mind and your heart open. Risk is im­por­tant as well, in all ar­eas of life. And al­ways be hon­est with your­self – be the one you are, or dis­cover your­self.

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