Interview with Edoardo Carlino

Winner of Furniture Design Awards

Award Winning Designer Edoardo Carlino shares insights


Interview with Edoardo Carlino at Monday 24th of October 2016:

DL: Could you please tell us a bit about your design background and education?
EC : I've studied buildings engineering at the University of Calabria (Italy), where I also attended an Advanced Course in industrial design.

DL: What motivates you to design in general, why did you become a designer?
EC : During my academic studies, I've discovered my passion for industrial design. In 2001 with “Techno“, eyeglasses equipped with a device to measure heart rate and earphones for listening to music from mp3 players, I was one of the winners at the International Design Competition “Worldframe, Sports Fashion & Techno “, contest organized by Safilo with Carrerasport brand and Since then I've decided that this passion had to become my work.

DL: What do you design, what type of designs do you wish to design more of?
EC : I like to invest my time paying particoular attention to the development of innovative concepts. We already have on the market, for example, too many tables, too many chairs, so many beds and a myriad of home furnishings. So I like to think more about how to add features to the traditional objects in an attempt to create completely new ones.

DL: What makes a good design a really good design, how do you evaluate good design?
EC : I can see good design in the objects or products that really try to improve the human life or try to solve simple or great problems of daily life. Unfortunately, especially in the furniture sector, we have a whole range of very beautiful products but resulting from competition between companies or market needs and that are often pure exercises in style but do not add more. In these case the design becomes art, that however I can appreciate, but it's art and so, for my vision, it's difficult for me define "good design" the art. It's art and then another thing.

DL: What is the dream project you haven’t yet had time to realize?
EC : A time machine :-)

DL: What is your secret recipe of success in design, what is your secret ingredient?
EC : I honestly don't know. Maybe to hide unexpected things behind simple and harmonious forms that come easily to the public. I think that if a product has a real content, is functional, clear, readable by everyone and "obvious'', It will be probably an object of success and so its designer.

DL: Who are some other design masters and legends you get inspired from?
EC : Many designers and no one in particular. Generally I love the countries of Northern Europe and their way of life and then I appreciate so much the great old masters of Scandinavian design from which, sometimes, I get inspiration.

DL: What is your greatest design, which aspects of that design makes you think it is great?
EC : I think my greatest project, which is also the one that gave me notoriety, is Hi-Can, a technological bed well as the modern reinterpretation of classic canopy bed. The product, created in 2009, has been a good success and in 2016 it will presented the new and completely redesigned version with a new style, more elegant and attractive, with many other features. For those doesn't know, it is a bed that, among many other technological equipments, integrates a projector and a screen of 70" that drops down at the foot of the bed. Putting together various technology products and a bed has made possible the birth of a completely new product that didn't exist before. It is a product that makes you dream, that excites, where you are enveloped by images and sounds. It's like a car for bedrooms and it looks like you are in a drive-in. For these reasons I think it's great.

DL: How could people improve themselves to be better designers, what did you do?
EC : I think people, to improve themselves and become better designers, should spend less time trying to simulate, or get inspiration from others, and spend more time trying to be inventors.

DL: If you hadn’t become a designer, what would you have done?
EC : Probably the restaurant owner because I love cooking and eating :-)... or musician.. I was a bass player in a jazz/funky band.

DL: How do you define design, what is design for you?
EC : Design for me is "vision" which leads to the creation of products or processes that meet real human needs or the needs of companies. The sublimation of design for me is when comes a new product, really useful for mankind, and with it born a new company.

DL: What helped you to become a great designer?
EC : It helped me to live in southern Italy, far from the places of design or where design is done, where people talk a lot about design, where people study design. I have lived away from these dynamics. I lived with the sun and the sea close to me in a genuine environment. Then I lived less design but I thought and dreamed a lot.

DL: What were the obstacles you faced before becoming a design master?
EC : To live in southern Italy :-)

DL: How does design help create a better society?
EC : The design is a tool in the hands of society. Designers and companies are part of society. So the design can't help to create a better one if society doesn't aspire to improve itself.

DL: What are you currently working on that you are especially excited about?
EC : I am working on several projects, but one in particular is exciting to me. I'm working on a hotel design in the US completely sustainable ... but I can't say more :-)

DL: What would you like to see changed in design industry in the coming years?
EC : I hope to see more companies focused in meeting the real human needs, more focused towards sustainability and towards respect for the planet, less focused on fashion or trends.

DL: What is your life motto as a designer?
EC : Think Future, in the sense of looking ahead, go beyond. In fact the name of my studio is Think Future Design.

DL: What is the role of technology when you design?
EC : The technology in my work plays an important role. I always start a project from handmade sketches but I can't do without CAD because, in addition to displaying the virtual objects, I want to be active part during the engineering stage of a product.

DL: What is your favorite color, place, food, season, thing and brand?
EC : Green, Mountains, Pasta, Summer, Bike

DL: Please tell us a little memoir, a funny thing you had experienced as a designer?
EC : One day I was called to the University, in the mechanical engineering department, because a my friend Professor and some colleagues wanted to show me one of their projects. It was a large metal cube. On one face of the cube they had projected stereoscopic movies and animations in virtual reality of archaeological finds. I misunderstood and I thought that the projection took place inside the cube (while in reality it was planned outside). I thought then: "why don't we put in the cube a great mattress?". Thus was born my tech canopy Hi-Can :-)