Interview with Hung Yuan Chang

Winner of Furniture Design Awards

Award Winning Designer Hung Yuan Chang shares insights


Interview with Hung Yuan Chang at Thursday 23rd of May 2019:

DL: Could you please tell us a bit about your design background and education?
HC : I’ve been in other field for several years which I did not feel I fit in very well then I turned to architecture and spent 5 years, that’s where I started my passion of doing design. I’ve done many different projects including bridge design, road design, park design and of course building and interior design. After that I decided to do something a little bit more niche and that’s when I started my journey in RIT.

DL: What distinguishes between a good designer and a great designer?
HC : In my mind, good designer is the person that finds the problem and solves and great designer does more than solves the problem but also breaks the tradition and creates a new path.

DL: What is the value of good design? Why should everyone invest in good design?
HC : A good piece of design could only make life easier and better. Same as owning a piece of furniture that is designed and crafted well, which will make you feel comfortable and be more focusing on what you need to do. And of course, if you own a very unique piece of furniture in your house, you could brag about it when your friends visit.

DL: What would you design and who would you design for if you had the time?
HC : I would love to design a museum if that’s possible. A museum that’s made for ordinary population which could be easy accessed.

DL: What is your secret recipe of success in design, what is your secret ingredient?
HC : I have my secret sauce which is a combination of different professional areas and experiences such as interior design and architecture, and adding my passion when it comes to design.

DL: Who are some other design masters and legends you get inspired from?
HC : Of course, tons of them: Santiago Calatrava, Rem Koolhaas, Leo Fender, Renzo Piano and MVRDV.

DL: What are your favorite designs by other designers, why do you like them?
HC : I definitely love the the samuel beckett bridge designed from Santiago Calatrava. which is a perfect balance and mixture of sculpture and physic science.

DL: How could people improve themselves to be better designers, what did you do?
HC : I challenge myself all the time - my knowledge and my techniques. I am also challenging the traditions and perceptions constantly. I am always hunger and wanting to know or do more.

DL: If you hadn’t become a designer, what would you have done?
HC : I always have passions in music, all kinds of music. I think I would go down that path if I am not a designer.

DL: How do you think designers should present their work?
HC : I am seeing this as one of the necessaries as the work needs to be seen and be criticized before it becomes a great masterpiece.

DL: How does design help create a better society?
HC : Good design should make the society and people’s life runs easier and smoother.

DL: What are you currently working on that you are especially excited about?
HC : I am working on multiple furnitures right now, one of them is going to be a new experience for me since I am going to work with someone whose skill is iron crafting which is something I’ve never tried before.

DL: What would you like to see changed in design industry in the coming years?
HC : I’d like to see designers could be respected more in Asia where good design might not receiving the respect as it should nowadays. But of course the young designers should get stronger and demonstrate themselves.

DL: Where do you think the design field is headed next?
HC : Caring our environment is an important trend for every industries since we are facing more and more challenges with the rapid changing of our environment, design is no exception, that’s going to be the topic that all of us should care about.

DL: What is your life motto as a designer?
HC : Have you done your best and have you carry out the best out for the work - always challenge myself.

DL: Do you think design sets the trends or trends set the designs?
HC : Hard to tell - it could be the history trend that takes us to a certain design but it could also because of the design creates a new era.

DL: When you see a new great design or product what comes into your mind?
HC : I always want to know where was the start and what inspires the work.

DL: Who is your ideal design partner? Do you believe in co-design?
HC : I do believe in co-design, working with people with different mind is always an exciting thing because you never know what chemistry is going to happen which might lead to something extraordinary.

DL: How did you develop your skills as a master designer?
HC : I’ve been trained 5 years in the architecture field thus I started the development of my fundamental designing skills when I was in school. And when I was with my first job, the frustration and the gap that I perceived between book theory and practice in the real situation led me want to go down a different path thus I chose furniture design. What I realized was only when you are strong enough and have 100% control that you are going to be compromised.

DL: How do you feel about all the awards and recognition you had, is it hard to be famous?
HC : I am so glad and excited that my work is now being recognized which is a long way and not an easy way. Every designers start from somewhere, right?

DL: What is your favorite color, place, food, season, thing and brand?
HC : I love navy blue, that’s my favorite color. My favorite food is Taiwanese cold noodles with sesame sauce. The lakes in Rochester New York during the winter is my favorite place and now you also see my favorite season. I could go crazy with guitars. And the brand that I ador most is Giant, the bike maufactuer.

DL: What makes your day great as a designer, how do you motivate yourself?
HC : An upbeat rock music is a must to start my day!

DL: When you were a little child, was it obvious that you would become a great designer?
HC : Now that I look back, it’s quite obvious - I love drawing and tearing things apart and put them back together when I was a kid. My favorite toys were Lego and Bandai models. These toys had help me shape the way I think and how I construct things.

DL: What do you think about future; what do you see will happen in thousand years from now?
HC : This is an interesting question but I don’t think I could give you an answer as the mother earth had been damaged by human being so badly, I could not imagine there are still human after thousand years. But in the short run, I’d love to see auto-piloting cars to be available for everyone as I hate to drive so much.