Continuing our occasional series introducing members of the 4D team.
Richard’s stint in an architectural practice taught him to care deeply about how things fit together and the importance of materials as well as process.
1. What do you do at 4D?
I oversee the overall design output for the company, acting as an interface between the clients and our team here. I still do some designing but predominantly it’s become a management role, liaising with clients, new prospect work, costings and ensuring a high-quality output.
In essence, my job is to make sure everything runs smoothly…
2. Tell us about today?
First thing we did a de-stall for The Goldsmith’s Company Christmas event at the Saville Club in Mayfair, part of which was taking down a suspended 4m long birch tree with lights and bespoke LED-lit jewellery tables.
Now I am working on an exhibition stand for jewellers Wartski at the big Maastricht art and design fair TEFAF in March. Just before that we are doing an art and antiques fair in New York called The Winter Show, the shippers are taking items as we speak so we have had to work to a strict shipping deadline.
Later we will have a team meeting, reporting and checking on all the different jobs that are going through the studio.
3. When did you know you wanted to be a designer?
I knew I wanted to do something creative when I took my A-levels and following that I did a Foundation year, culminating in 3D Design and then Product Design at Central St. Martins College of Art and Design. I enjoyed designing products that varied in scale, from pocket size gadgets to both interior and exterior furniture. We also had great opportunities to work on some projects with commercial businesses, which was a real eye opener.
4. Who inspires you?
My Dad owned a construction firm so he was always a source of inspiration - there is nothing he can't turn his hand to! A real craftsman who always enjoys learning something new, he taught me so much.
Ray and Charles Eames are my design heroes. I love the way they worked, their clarity of form and use of materials. Their pieces are well known and used today but at their inception, they changed the way we look at designing for the human form and the way we live holistically.
5. What’s been your highlight of working at 4D?
We recently designed, built and installed a Shakespeare exhibition for the British Library at the Library of Birmingham. As well as the creative freedom it was exciting to work with the experts from the Library and the priceless objects that are all owned by the general public. We displayed the first three Folios together for the first time and to emphasise their importance they were displayed in a dark room within a room. This was then decorated with gold leaf and internally lit with fibre optics. They looked amazing.
Four recommendations from Richard:
1. Yorkshire Sculpture Park http://www.ysp.co.uk
2. Assemble Studio http://assemblestudio.co.uk
3. Hauser & Wirth, Somerset http://www.hauserwirthsomerset.com
4. Sandham Memorial Chapel https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/sandham-memorial-chapel
And one extra …
5. Illums Bolighus https://www.illumsbolighus.com