Milan Design Week begins tomorrow – and the winners of the Lexus Design Award are already in Italy preparing to display their incredible creations.
Designers from across the globe were challenged with conceiving new products themed around the concept of ‘Curiosity’ – and the best will be exhibiting their entries at the world’s premier design event.
Twelve winning concepts were received from countries including Israel, India, Taiwan and Vietnam, and included timepieces, interactive displays, lighting products and packaging for liquids.
Chief among the participants from a UK perspective, James Fox was one of the two award winners selected to create a prototype of their product.
London-based James created ‘Macian’ – a set of connector-like parts that allow children and young people to make dens and fortresses out of found materials like branches, sticks and planks.
Following our previous interview published shortly after his win was announced, we caught up with James last week before he left for Milan to find about out the process of developing Macian.
Lexus Blog: You’re now ready for the show James, how has the development process been?
James Fox: It’s gone really well. I’ve had a busy month and there are a lot of elements to this project, so I’ve had to bring them all together to make Macian ready for the show.
I knew the build-up to Milan Design Week is always crazy, but I’m really looking forward to seeing everything come together. I won’t fully see the product display and everything else until the last moment, so it’s exciting.
LB: How much work have you had to do to get to this prototype stage?
JF: Macian has taken up every waking moment I’ve had. We had the tools and components come back from the injection moulding company just a few days ago and I’m really happy with the results. They look really good and they fit together nicely.
I left myself some work to the last minute to give more time to develop Macian. It was worth developing the product as much as I possibly could and spending that time refining it – I couldn’t have left it any later!
LB: How are you getting the prototype to the show?
JF: I’m taking the parts to Milan for the Design Week, there’s also a crate of all the construction materials and the display on its way there too. I’ve made a backpack that holds everything inside which I’m really happy with too.
LB: How closely have you worked with your mentor Arthur Huang?
JF: Arthur has been really helpful with the process – we have had quite a few calls on Skype to chat things through and his team have been really helpful too. I’ve been sending drawings and ideas over to them at all hours and they always reply really quickly. It’s a team effort and it’s really good to have had Arthur on board.
Stay tuned for more from the Milan Design Week in the next few days.