January 1, 2012
The Ones to Watch
In the coming year, these seven designers promise to be the profession’s rising stars.
Many of today’s leading designers, like Hella Jongerius, Patricia Urquiola, Naoto Fukasawa, Marcel Wanders, and the Bouroullec brothers, were relatively unknown to a North American audience when they were introduced in the pages of Metropolis. As members of today’s established guard, they continue to blend innovative designs with commercial savvy. In that tradition, this issue’s survey of game changers would hardly be complete without a look at the next generation of industrial-design talents. These young professionals seem to be less concerned with superstardom than they are with creating products that are sustainable, good-looking, and long-lasting. Their approaches are markedly different: Jader Almeida and Stian Korntved Ruud, for example, combine a midcentury-modern aesthetic with fine attention to detail, while others, like the duo of Studio Formafantasma, take a more conceptual approach to their work, bringing together craft and industry to stimulate a critical dialogue between the object and the end user. Take our advice: start tracking the careers of this promising new class of international designers.