The Universal Language of Design
A firm believer in the power of both functionality and aesthetics, Markus Kurkowski is an industrial designer who understands the impact of creative mindset and material application. Delivering on his mission to connect people through the universal language of great design.
What are some surprising places you look for inspiration?
The best ideas come outside of the office, being out in the nature. Watching natural phenomena and observing architecture in places you’re visiting for the first time, is incredibly enriching for a creative mind. You will profit from it at a later point.
Does creativity “strike” you? Or is it more of a deliberate process?
For me, creativity can be described as a mood or even just a memory of it. Of course, there comes the moment when you think you have that one “it idea” but you’re aware that it could be based in an experience you gained already. That experience combined with knowledge of the materials I work with… an inspiration can quickly be remastered into a useful and beautiful result.
Have you ever had a total “crash and burn” project? If so, what did you learn from the process?
During my studies, I did have a crash and burn moment. I came to accept it only with time, learning to turn that disappointment into an assessment of what can be done better.
Time is also a generous factor, your opinion about your own creations often changes over time. The less judgement you place on a pervious version of yourself, the more confident you can be. Now as a self-employed designer, I evaluate my creations all the time and tend not to rush projects.
You’ve worked with solid surface quite a few times, do you have any insight for designers and creatives just becoming familiar with the material?
My first experience with solid surface was gained while being interested in bathroom objects. Back then, it was a rather unknown material but the excitement was huge. So two sides grew on me: the bathroom sector and the used materials.
My recommendation for those new to solid surface would be to visit bathroom trade fairs, to also compare solid surface to other applied materials, such as the classic ceramics. Finding out the advantages and disadvantages will help you to get an impression of the seemingly unlimited possibilities and variations!
What was the last new thing you learned? Do you believe it’s important to continually educate yourself throughout life?
Yes, it is important. Learning is a constant and there are different dimensions, in the first place are the professional skills which you need to maintain and improve. On the other hand, your career and personality must have a focus on the market and the changes in this world.
When you accept that change can happen at any time, you will cope with it a lot better. In our profession, we face a continuous improvement of technology and a market that can frequently feel oversaturated.
What is a “dream” project for you?
Yacht design would be fantastic, it combines a lot of my passions: mobility and interior design. Solid surface is a material that could play a great role here, as it can offer great value for this sector, e.g. for nonporous and easy to clean furnishings.
What do you feel is the biggest block to your creativity?
What holds me back from my creativity would be a loss of versatility, getting caught in the same project types and creative sector. Apart from this, I don’t get irritated terribly fast, but I don’t like being threatened by pressure either. If a client provides lacking or false information at the start, it gives a certain undertone of being undervalued to the project, Which can easily block creativity and harm the business relationship.
Solid surface boasts a number of interesting attributes, what excites you most about working with the unique material?
My favorite attributes about the material are the matte surface, along with the large range of possible varieties in color and finishing quality despite white is the dominating chosen color. I also am impressed by the achievable minimum thickness. Overall solid surface has a wide range of application fields with a pretension of high quality!