An Interview with Renowned Product Designer Alexander Lervik

Sweden-based Product Designer Alexander Lervik has created a niche for self with his innovative design creations winning awards one after another. All his creations have the distinctive characteristics of Innovation, Humour, Unruliness, Passion and Intensity.

Lervik’s ’10 Stools – 10 Decades’ Exhibition with more than a million visitors was a great success. Alexander states, « I love innovation! I am inspired to find my own new solutions within the fields I work in. » His versatility is his main strength as a designer. From designing a Small Bicycle Lamps to Light Works of Art ; Furniture to Architectural Assignments ; Art Glassware to Liquor Bottles – Lervik switches gear from artistic projects to commercial assignments as a designer with ease.

Johnny D interviews the renowned Product Designer to unravel the mystery of Alexander Lervik’s designing skills :

Johnny D: Please enlighten Design Trends’ esteem readers about Alexander Lervik – the Designer.

Alexander Lervik: I am a multi-disciplinary designer, who loves innovation. In one way, the innovations are more important for me than the design itself. That doesn’t mean that I don’t put a lot of work into the design work but it means that the fire in my heart gets the power from the innovations. I loves to be challenged, and that is the reason why I do so many different things. I always want to learn more and that happened when I develop a product in completely new areas. This year my new homeliest for Aritco was one such project. I never designed an elevator before and now I know everything about lifts. I am an explorer in my heart (smiles).

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JD: From designing Small Bicycle Lamps to Light Works of Art, Furniture to Architectural Assignments, Art Glassware to Liquor Bottles – Your versatility as a designer has spread its wings in various spheres. What goes in your mind while designing a product?

AL: I try to find a strong identity for the product. That could for example be through an innovation or a strong graphic design feeling of the product. I also want a story in the product that can be told, both for me when I sell the design to my clients but also for the sales’ team of the client so that they could work with the story.

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JD: How has been your journey since your design creation was first acknowledged with a prestigious award? Please describe the feeling of winning the first award in your career.

AL: That was of course fantastic! For me it was the excellent Swedish Design Award for a carpet I had designed in 1999. I was very proud when I entered the stage. But the strongest rush I had when I got my first product in a design magazine during my first year in school. That feeling was the strongest ever. Even more then when I got a half spread in New York Times a couple of years later.

JD: Your design creations have prestigious place in the National Museum in Stockholm, the National Museum and the International Museum of Art, Architecture and Design in Oslo and Röhsska Museum in Gothenburg. Which was / is your most memorable experience? Reasons in brief.

AL: The most memorable experience was when the National Museum in Oslo bought the red chair for 12.000 USD. That was a fantastic feeling when one of my chairs was sold to a museum for that kind of money. But also the first time when the Swedish National Museum bought the red chair was something special. It was a very proud moment for me!

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JD: Please enlighten esteem readers in brief how you create innovative designs that goes on to win awards on a global scale?

AL: I don’t think that anyone can design products to win the prestigious awards. Some products have something special that goes directly in to people’s hearts. But it’s really hard to know before how it will end up. I have made products that I was sure that people would love and give it several awards but it didn’t went out that way. On the other hand, I have designed several products that I didn’t thought would win but they won a lot of awards. Of course, there are also products that I realize that this is a hit – and that became a hit! Creations and designing are done with the heart and soul of every designer in the world.

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JD: Please mention some of your award winning designs. What were the challenges you had to face during the designing process? How did you overcome them?

AL: One of them is my Lucy Table that went onto win the Red Dot Award. I had an idea of designing a folding table for more than ten years, but I couldn’t find the perfect solution to fold. Suddenly, it came to me and I solved the technical problem. The solution worked the first time and it became a big success. Another product was the Rib Chair that was chosen Best in the Show at the Stockholm Furniture Fair in 2009 and also “Best of the Best” 100% Design in Rotterdam. Here I came with an idea to mould in the frame when they were moulding the seat. No one had done that before and it came out like a great product. No screws were needed and today it has the highest environmental friendly signs.

JD: How different is it to design Product, Furniture, Objects de Art and Architectural Assignments? Please enlighten us about each process in brief.

AL: It’s mainly the scales that are different between the small jewelry object and the big houses I design. The process is nearly the same. I start with research to find inspiration. After that I build mood boards and start sketching with paper and pen. I work with the concept to find a strong identity in the project and after that we bring it in to the computer to make 3D renderings. We build models and then the final presentation.

JD: Please tell us about ‘One’ memorable experience that you relish the most? Reasons in brief.

AL: This was of course, when I did my Chocolate lamp! To work with melting chocolate for three months with the fragrance and the taste was amazing for a guy who likes sweets (smiles). I will never be able to forget the moment all my life.

JD: As a designer, what goes in the mind while designing any new product? Please explain the branding process from a designer’s point of view.

AL: It’s extremely important to learn about the brand I am designing for. For me, as a designer, it’s very important that I can translate the feeling of the company in to the product itself. The best samples I believe is when you can see which company that produces a product just when you see the design. Some designers also works with this identity so that you can see who the designer is. I don’t work like that, my range is widely spread in the design feeling.

JD: Please tell us about the 5 major awards you feel proud of and state the product for which you won them.

AL: The following are the awards I have won:

– The excellent Swedish Design Award for my Carpet Nordic

– The Red Dot Award for my Twilight Bird House

– The Design S Award for my Lamp Jehanna that I design together with Johan Carpner

The Forum +1 Award for the Rib Chair

The Swedish Light Award for my Dimension Light Sculpture

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Image Courtesy : The Designer

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