Tag Archives: 3M

Todd Bracher Explains His Design Philosophy at NeoCon

As the NeoCon 2014 keynote speaker, Todd Bracher explained reduction as being central to his design philosophy. “How can we take away everything except for what we need? Singularity is the way we communicate truth.”

Drawing on examples from martial arts, chess and soccer, Bracher explained how irreducible complexity reveals truthful solutions – an absolute result informed by the context.

His beautifully simple creations reflect his philosophy and design process. A lamp inspired by the phases of the moon. A vase inspired by the sensuality and beauty of the neck. A chandelier that takes cues from a butterfly, just gravity creating the shape.

Shaw Contract a Group collaborated with Bracher in 2011 to design a carpet tile that answers the question: What does music look like? Hear Bracher explain The Music Project during his keynote presentation.

Todd Bracher Keynote Speech at NeoCon 2014 from Shaw Contract Group on Vimeo.

With equal parts humility and humor, Bracher shared further examples
of his work:

On the Tod table, designed to live next to other furniture and complement it like a beauty mark does on the face, Bracher said, “Cindy Crawford, she is ok, but it’s her beauty mark makes her special.”


The Fulfillment Clock, a timepiece to be worn around the neck resting over the heart, features a transparent face which allows users to read the clock from either side. “You can watch time – winding down or winding up, depending on if you glass is half empty or half full.”

Fulfillment Clock TB

A cork jacket made for the Wallpaper Handmade Collaboration offered Bracher the opportunity to work with a fascinating new material that he described as unlike wood or fabric and with a life of its own. “The goal was to create upholstery for the body. And is incredibly hot to wear.”

Cork jacket TB

When asked to design a Munny, a child’s vinyl robot for a New York Based event, Bracher tied it to the back of a bicycle and rode with it dragging along the ground across Manhattan. “Let NYC make the design.”

Munny NYC TB

Two of Bracher’s designs (shown above) won 2014 Best of NeoCon awards which were announced at the same time as his keynote presentations: Gold for his work with 3M on VESSEL by 3M + Todd Bracher and Gold for his collaboration with HBF on The Triscape Collection.

3M and Todd Bracher

Best of NeoCon Gold for VESSEL by 3M + Todd Bracher

HBF and Todd Bracher

Best of NeoCon Gold for The Triscape Collection by Todd Bracher + HBF

But instead of ending with a nod to his newly acquired accolades, Bracher ended his presentation with a final thought the importance of reduction, sharing a story about Katsushika Hokusai, who spent a lifetime drawing images of Mount Fuji. In an interview, Hokusai explained that at 40 years old, it took him 36 lines to draw Mount Fuji, at 50 years old he drew it in 10 lines and by 60 years old, just 8 lines. When asked if he goal was to live to 100 and draw it in one line he responded, “no, it is to live to 120 and say it all in a single point.”

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Highlights from London Design Festival

Now in its 11th year, the London Design Festival has expanded from product design to now include sculpture, fashion, and graphic design. Below are some highlights from around the city, including floor art, lighting and technological innovations.

London Design 1

The cork floor was installed on the existing bridge in the Victoria & Albert Museum’s (V&A) and was a collaboration between London-based FAT Architecture and Portugal’s Amorin, the world’s largest producer of cork. The floor is made up of a series of natural cork tiles laid in a repeating trompe l’oeil geometric pattern that is based on a scientific diagram of cork’s cellular structure.

London Design 2

On display until November 21, the 28.280 custom chandelier by Canadian designer Omer Arbel was one of the V&A’s most ambitious installations for the festival. Located in the museum’s grand entrance, the massive grouping of 280 individual 28 Series handmade glass pendant lamps are suspended from the highest point of the building and cascade down almost 100 feet.

London Design 3

Made in the U.S., the new 3M collection includes the Lightfalls wall sconce by New York-based designer (and Shaw Contract Group collaborator) Todd Bracher. Using a proprietary 3M film that is 99% reflective, one 15 inch-wide voluptuous orb sconce can distribute the light of a single LED into multiple fixtures, creating the illusion of several sources where there is only one.

London Design 4

DuPont Corian announced a collaboration with the Power Matters Alliance (PMA) industrial coalition to integrate PMA-compatible wireless charging solutions for smartphones and tablets into work surfaces made with Corian.

Images: Architectural Record

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