David Trubridge has been making and selling furniture and lighting systems for several years.In the last few years he has exhibited at 100% Design in London, nine times at the Salone del Mobile in Milan, and four times at ICFF in New York.
Q: Were you always interested in design? Tell us about the moment when you decided this is the way to go.
I was always interested in making things from my earliest days of childhood. design only came later once i had mastered the craft of making wooden furniture and started to want to imbue the things i made with a bit more of me and my time.
Q:Where do you look for an obscure source of inspiration?
I derive my ‘inspiration’ from nature, but the patterns and structures i design contain the forms and vocabulary that i create through my own art process.
Q:What’s your current colour obsession?
For a range of fabrics that we have just launched, i went to my large collection of close-up detail photographs that i have taken in the many areas of wilderness where i have hiked. These give me unlikely, but perfectly natural, colour combinations. Then we name the colour set after the landscape from which it was derived: Antarctica, Australia, Iceland, California . . .
Q:What do you consider to be the most iconic design piece of the past century?
That’s really hard!! The best i can do is one of Brancusi’s ‘Bird in Space’. No-one has had more influence on 3D form in the 20th century than Brancusi, from the largest sculpture and building to the simplest shampoo bottle. He is like a signpost standing at the start of the modernist era, a radical point of transition between it and the previous age of rampant surface decoration.
Q:What do you think is the easiest way to update a room?
Adding a piece of furniture does little to a room, but you can transform it just by hanging one of our lights, mostly because you are adding emotion which fills the room. This may be the primal feel of something like late afternoon sun filtering through spring foliage, or firelight flickering on a cave ceiling. Plus it uses the space below the ceiling which is usually empty, so nothing needs to be moved.
Q:What is your favourite interior style?
Warm, personal, simple, timeless
Q:What is your favourite book/magazine on design?
‘Cradle to Cradle’ by McDonagh and Braungart.
Q:How about your favourite site?
Q:What you recommend for next year ?
Learn to enjoy and live with what you have — don’t treat your home like an ephemeral fad that needs constantly updating. Don’t listen to the stylemongerers who want us to buy more stuff, not because we need it but because they, and the whole economy on whose behalf they speak, need us to buy it. We can’t go on doing that to the planet any more!
Q:What advice do you have for young designers or architects reading this interview?
Don’t follow fads and trends. Learn to speak from your own heart with integrity and stick with that. Ultimately you will be more respected and that will keep you there for the long haul; the weak and superficial followers will be exposed for what they are and will fade away.
Q:What are your plans for the future?
To produce more experience and culture and less material ‘stuff’. To be able to put into the practice of my business more of my environmental and political beliefs. I do believe that humans need culture simply because we have always made art since we lived in caves. It defines who we are. But we have to find ways to fulfil that need sustainably.
Q:What do you think of our site?
It is great to get people thinking about how they live in their homes because it is so important in how it makes us feel. But i do think you should include more about making responsible choices — choices that consider the world that our grandchildren will inherit from us.