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Interview with Nobuhito Mori

Home > Designer Interviews > Nobuhito Mori

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Nobuhito Mori (NM) for A’ Design Award and Competition. You can access the full profile of Nobuhito Mori by clicking here.

Interview with Nobuhito Mori at Friday 20th of May 2022

FS: Could you please tell us more about your art and design background? What made you become an artist/designer? Have you always wanted to be a designer?
NM: Ever since I was a child, I have been making things out of scraps I picked up at construction sites and playing with them. It was a natural progression for me to work in the construction industry.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
NM: The architectural design office was started by one person in 1991. The firm is involved in general architectural design and product design, with a focus on housing.

FS: What is "design" for you?
NM: It is one of the methods used to solve the problem.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
NM: These include tools and architecture with functional beauty.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
NM: It is too many to narrow it down as it was felt to be good regardless of genre.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
NM: This is the home of a senior student from university.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
NM: There is no particular limitation, and it is desirable to have one that can demonstrate its strengths in key areas.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
NM: It is a time to create exciting moments of immersion in problem solving.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
NM: The important thing is freshness and originality.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
NM: The landscape that gradually becomes visible through repeated hesitations and decisions is enjoyable.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
NM: Completion is the beginning of the evaluation and testing process and is not a distraction.

FS: What makes a design successful?
NM: It is calm analysis and perseverance.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
NM: It is about whether they are helping to solve the problem.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
NM: Unlike institutions, there is a modest but influential cultural aspect.

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
NM: I think we are evolving on two fronts, science (technology) and art. Compared to technology, art has some elements that cannot be measured by the value of evolution.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
NM: We have never held it.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
NM: There is potential for inspiration in every input, which often seems to descend immediately after waking up.

FS: How would you describe your design style? What made you explore more this style and what are the main characteristics of your style? What's your approach to design?
NM: We aim to create something that does not exist in the world. We are looking for ways to solve problems with new inventions, whether in terms of materials or spatial composition.

FS: Where do you live? Do you feel the cultural heritage of your country affects your designs? What are the pros and cons during designing as a result of living in your country?
NM: Tokyo, Japan. Although its high population density makes it cramped, which is a disadvantage, it is considered an advantage as an island nation with a unique culture.

FS: How do you work with companies?
NM: Apart from architectural design, consulting and product development are carried out jointly.

FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
NM: The first thing would be to give designers the opportunity. This is because in many cases, he or she does not know what ideas will be generated.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
NM: The work is subject to a variety of conditions, including site, budget, requirements and deadlines. We examine many possibilities with a deep understanding of all of them. We build theories with science and make decisions with artistic sensibility. All decisions are made after in-depth communication with the client.

FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
NM: 1. self-designed bookcase and living room storage, 2. chair LC1 3. wooden swords 4. protective gear

FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
NM: In the morning, perform an hour-long routine, including meditation and squats. On the train to work, I collect information on my smartphone, check emails and internet news in the office. After meeting with staff, sketches drawings and sometimes goes to site supervision.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
NM: It is good to get into the habit of input (reading, experiencing and learning) and output (sketching, producing and discussing). It is good to get into the habit of observing and analysing things accurately and dealing with them with persistence and sincerity.

FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
NM: We see it as positive that we can develop our imagination and freely envision the future. Although we have to deal with various difficulties in realising it, we do not see it negatively.

FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
NM: It is about thinking as a science and making decisions as an art.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
NM: It is important to have a flexible sensibility that allows you to question common sense and stereotypes.

FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
NM: The tools I use are my head and freehand sketches.

FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
NM: The more detailed the process chart, the easier it is to manage time.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
NM: Small products require a minimum of three months to be done while prototyping. If a manufacturer needs to change the factory line, for example, it takes about two years. A small construction project, such as a house, takes about 10 months from design to completion.

FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
NM: In the case of construction, it is whether it is possible within the predetermined costs. In the case of product goods, it is whether they can be sold.

FS: What was your most important job experience?
NM: It is housing in general that has difficult conditions. New ideas tend to emerge because of the difficulties.

FS: Who are some of your clients?
NM: They are ordinary individuals and companies.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
NM: We want to build it in beautiful surroundings, like a holiday home.

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
NM: Any use for a building is acceptable, but we would like to build abroad.

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
NM: There are several staff members who work in their own offices.

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
NM: Several projects are in progress and will be uploaded to the website when completed. Please look forward to it.

FS: How can people contact you?
NM: It is a good idea to get a message by email first. This is because we need to translate and understand the content if it is not in Japanese.

FS: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
NM: Nothing


FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.

A’ Design Award and Competitions grants rights to press members and bloggers to use parts of this interview. This interview is provided as it is; DesignPRWire and A' Design Award and Competitions cannot be held responsible for the answers given by participating designers.


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