12 THINGS ABOUT ADRIAAN HUGO, INDUSTRIAL DESIGNER
AWARD-WINNING INDUSTRIAL DESIGNER, ADRIAAN HUGO, IS AN OPTIMIST, EVEN IF TIMES PROVE DIFFICULT. IF THERE IS STILL A DREAM, THEN HE IS HAPPY TO WORK TOWARDS IT, HE SAYS. Industrial designer Adriaan Hugo is one half of husband-and-wife design duo Dokter and Misses, the other half being graphic designer Katy Taplin. The two have combined their industrial and graphic design skills since 2005 to create modernist work, where strong construction lines and a bold use of colour create graphic shapes and spaces. Dokter and Misses have exhibited their work in London, Miami, New York, Dubai and Basel.
started taking up more and more of my time. But I am working hard at trying to get back time to design. I think it is part of our journey as a business – we design, make and sell – all important aspects of a successful business, but I’m approaching a point where I need to hand over some of the roles and focus on what makes me happy.
5. How limited are you as an
artist by traditional industrial design and economic factors to survive, for instance? We are limited by our current reality for sure. But I am a designer and I am an optimist. If there is still a dream then I am happy to work towards it. Opportunities only come to me if I am open to them. 6. Do you have a product that sells like sweet cakes? Sweet cakes, no. But we have some staples that sell well over the years. 7. In what way do you and Katy Taplin work together, how do you inspire each other? We are both designers, so we create together. In the business we have other roles but designing together is what we are good at. We ebb and flow between creating and critiquing. So in that way I think we push and inspire each other. 8. What makes your work stand out from its competitors? We have developed a recognisable style over the years. We strive to be original and challenge ideas with graphically striking pieces that push the boundaries of traditional production processes.
1. What is design to you?
Design is a way of consciously creating. It should be original and innovative. There are many reasons one may design something, from solving a problem to expressing an idea or a feeling. 2. Do you achieve that ideal in your work? Sometimes, but we strive for it.
3. How difficult was it to get
your business off the ground? Looking back it was easy because it was driven by youthful passion and ignorance. The process of creating brings me great joy in my life. 4. How do you keep the balance between design and running a business? The last few years running a business has
Adriaan Hugo and Katy Taplin who make up the design duo Dokter and Misses. Moonjelly sculptural lights. The amorphous shaped glass shades are hand blown in Eswatini by Ngwenya glass (2018).
ALUMNI IMPUMELELO 68
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