Crossing the boundaries to the unexpected, Karim Rashid’s ability to transcend typology continues to make him a force among designers of his generation. We will take you inside of his iconic design journey and give a sneak pick of what the future holds for one of the most iconic designers of our era.
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Karim Rashid design is now one of the top international references of today’s design industry. His career kicked off in 1992 when he was 32-year-old and decided to move to the famous city of dreams, also known as New York City. “I was penniless but started drawing objects romanticizing about the beautiful world I always wanted to shape. I found a rundown loft without kitchen or bathroom and struggled to survive”, said Karim to the CovetED team when thinking about the breakthrough moment of his unique path. After approaching about 100 companies from Lazy boy to Gillette, Karim Rashid only got one client so he decided to search for other opportunities and started teaching at Pratt Institute and worked alone for a few years before hiring some staff.
The New York-based designer realized at a young age that his future was going to pass by entering the creative world of the design world. “I realized my life’s mission at the age of 5 in London. I went sketching with my father drawing churches on Sundays. He taught me to see – he taught me perspective at that age – he taught me that I could design anything and touch all aspects of our physical landscape. I remember drawing a cathedral facade and deciding I did not like the shape of the gothic windows (the pointed tops seemed dangerous) so I redesigned them. I drew them as ovals.” – said Karim Rashid.
Through the entire process, and with some big obstacles across the way, Karim Rashid never lost his determination to create a successful practice. He describes his unique style as sensual minimalist since he is passionate about simple things that are functional for the daily basis routine. “Human, Sensual, Biomorphic” is how Karim Rashid describes most of his design projects, whether it is interiors or bespoke products.
“I don’t take inspiration from any one place or thing. Inspiration comes from being creative within the criteria of a project, and as well as from functional needs and desires. always found myself having more ideas than companies could ever produce. I perpetually observe and analyze and dissect everything around me in our built environments”
– Karim Rashid
With more than 4000 designs in production, over 300 awards to his name, Karim Rashid believes that the project of his career is still to come. For Karim Rashid, each client is a new challenge and a new possibility to revolutionize the modern design world. “I work with the strengths of the client – if they work with glass, fiberglass, 3D printing, wood, rotomolding, injection molding because these are the cultures of the company – and design is about this collaboration. But for this connection to work, a designer must understand completely the culture and history of a company, their vision, and their market”.
There is no doubt that Karim Rashid is considered to be one of the strongest design influencers of the era due to its unique modernist vision. “Industrial design and Interior design are driven by designers embracing new technologies, whether it is material chemistry, production method, or mechanical invention.”. He wants to design products and projects as a complete rapture of experience, that fulfills all of the consumer issues present in our generation and that was exactly what Karim tried to achieve with his new collection for Essential Home and DelightFULL.
“My inspiration for the collection for the brands was to create designs for our environments that are exciting, and seductive, colorful, and flexible, and customizable. Designs that are timeless”, enhanced Karim Rashid about the new project that he is developing with the two Portuguese mid-century modern brands.
“Our lives are elevated when we experience beauty, comfort, luxury, performance, and utility seamlessly together. I believe creating a comfortable home comes with the need for less.”
– Karim Rashid
Karim Rashid was inspired by the casualism concept that is present not only in our days but also in the upcoming future. “Home is now work, sanctuary, school, art gallery, restaurant, movie theatre. This Casualism has shaped our lives, our minds, our spaces, so the virtual and physical blur, where luxury is ease, where new comforts prevail.”. According to the renowned designers, our home furnishings and décor have gained much importance for the past year and must be contemporary comfortable ergonomic details since we are spending much more time in our homes.
Featuring an eclectic mix of old and new, this unique collection by Karim Rashid for Essential Home and DelightFULL was designed for today’s “modus operandi” and social milieu and is suitable for any project type, whether it is residential or hospitality. Rashid was delighted to embrace this new challenge especially since it happened during the start of the worldwide pandemic situation and believes that we entered a new era of personal connections. “Essential Home and DelightFULL were fantastic to work with! They were instantly enthusiastic and really driven to make the partnership work. Particularly during the challenges of the last few months and despite our distance we are all becoming a more collaborative and kinder society and industry. Zoom/Cysco/Skype/Teams meetings allow for a more personal connection with my clients and staff that didn’t exist when you’re communicating from behind the veil of an email. Collaboratively we must find new languages, new semantics, new aesthetics, new materials, and behavioral approaches. This is how we change the world!” – said Karim Rashid.
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