Tag Archives: The Music Project

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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The Music Project & Todd Bracher Featured on Fab.com

On a mission to help people better their lives with design, fab.com helps people connect with the world’s most exciting designers. And this weekend, May 17 – May 22, fab.com customers will have an opportunity to connect with Shaw Contract Group and Todd Bracher.

During this limited sale period, Fab.com will be featuring five tile styles from The Music Project collection for sale to the public as a part of the Todd Bracher Shop. Born from a creative endeavor between Todd Bracher and Shaw Contract Group, The Music Project is a visual representation of the pitch and gravity of music.

Visit us at Fab.com and order a box for yourself or a friend.

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Todd Bracher with Advice for Future Design School Graduates

As part of a survey conducted by Interior Design, Todd Bracher is one of four recent alumni interviewed about the industry outlook for designers graduating in 2013 . A graduate of Pratt Institute, Todd Bracher, principal of Todd Bracher Studio LLC and Shaw Contract Group collaborator on our collection The Music Project, is one of 40 alumni and faculty members profiled in a feature in the school’s Prattfolio magazine titled “40 Under 40.” Bracher was also recently featured in a solo show, “The Essence of Things,” in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Read more about Todd’s outlook for the future and how design has changed since the start of his career:

Interior Design: How has the design field changed for grads since you began your career?
Todd Bracher: Even just 16 years or so ago when I graduated, design was still a sort of undiscovered industry. Design was not seen in the U.S. as a driver for business, so the training of a designer was much more about problem solving and less about how we can impact business via marketing and innovation. At the same time, I do feel the burden is heavier on a young designer today. They need to know more as the expectations are more than when I was a recent grad. One thing is for sure: Great design, intellect and logic are still the highest priorities.

ID: How do you think “design” is viewed in popular culture today; is it more significant in daily life than it was 10 or 20 years ago? If so, how?
TB: Design has grown considerably more important in today’s popular culture. For certain the success of Apple’s iPhone has opened the door for consumers to what high-level design can be and given them the desire for such quality in other aspects of life.

ID: What is the one thing you know now that you wish you’d known when you were starting your career?
TB: Understand that design is a business. You are there to help lead businesses and to guide them down new avenues to success. It is not easy, but if you are smart enough and work hard enough you can achieve amazing things. You are also only as good as your collaborator, so pick strong ones that believe in you as you do them.

Read more from Todd’s interview with Interior Design here.

Todd Bracher in collaboration with Shaw Contract Group in The Music Project collection. Seen here discussing the collection with creative director, Reesie Duncan


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Todd Bracher to Speak at NeoCon East

Todd Bracher, designer and collaborator on our collection, The Music Project, will be one of the keynote speakers at NeoCon East in October in Baltimore, MD. Bracher, who’s about to  complete an exhibition in Brazil will share his views on everything from the moon and music to fish skeletons and photons, all while sharing how his process is opening new avenues for Design & Business.

A native New Yorker, Todd Bracher, founder of Todd Bracher Studio LLC, currently works out of New York City after a decade working in Copenhagen, Milan, Paris and London. In addition to our The Music Project collaboration, Todd has collaborated with some of the most prestigious brands from around the world on projects ranging from furniture and object design to interiors and architecture. He has been pinned as “America’s next great designer,” as well as received nominations for International Designer of the year in 2008 and 2009. His experiences range from working at Tom Dixon’s Design studio to being appointed Creative Director of the Scandinavian luxury brand Georg Jensen.

Todd Bracher will be speaking on Thursday, Oct. 18 at 11 a.m. at the Theater, Show Floor. For more information about NeoCon East, visit their website

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Swings Bring Music to the Streets of Montreal

Every Spring, an interactive installation is placed in Montreal’s Quartier de Spectacles. This year, Canadian design group Daily Tous Les Jours brought music to the streets with 21 Balançoires (21 Swings). Designers Mouna Andraos and Melissa Mongiat installed 21 Swings between a new music complex and science center, converting a narrow strip of land into an enormous interactive instrument. Pre-recorded sounds from a xylophone, piano, and other instruments were programmed into color-coded swings. When in use, the swings play various notes, however when swung in unison, more complex melodies and harmonies arise. An additional “secret mode” was programmed to only play when all 21 swings are in use.

Like Daily Tous Jours used swings to make music, we used music to make carpet! Learn more about our sound-inspired collection, The Music Project.

Musical Light Swings on the Streets of Montreal

Picture 1 of 6

Photos: Colossal

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