Jasper Morrison

(b. 1959)

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(1959– )

British designer Jasper Morrison has become highly influential in industrial design of the later 20th and 21st centuries. His clients have included Alessi, Vitra, FSB (Franz Schneider Brakel), Rosenthal, and Rowenta and his work widely experienced, whether through collaborating with Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron in the furnishing of public spaces with his designs at Tate Modern, London, in 2000 or a digital installation at the Design Museum, London, in 2001.

Morrison studied design at Kingston Polytechnic (now University) followed by a Masters degree at the Royal College of Art. He graduated from the latter in 1985, having already been commissioned by furniture companies such as Sheridan Coakley Productions (SCP) and featured in the design press. In the following year he established the Office for Design in London, gradually building up a series of commissions from a range of companies including the Italian company Capellini and the Swiss company Vitra. Morrison's work was also exhibited overseas as at the Documenta 8 exhibition at Kassel, Germany, in 1987 and a room setting—including plywood chairs, chaise longue, and tables—at the Design Werkstadt exhibition in Berlin in the following year. Domus, the Italian design magazine, also profiled his work in May 1988, including the Rug of Many Bosoms (1985) and the Thinking Man's Chair (1986) for Capellini. He also worked for the Italian lighting manufacturer Flos, Magis (including the Bottle Rack (1994) and one‐piece injection‐moulded plastic Air Chair (1999), Alessi (including the Tin Family kitchen containers (1998) and Sim salad utensils (1998) ) and Rosenthal (the Noon dinnerware service of 1997). His work also took on a more obviously industrial edge in consultancy work for the Hanover transport authority, Üstra, for whom he designed bus stops (for the Busstops Art Project in which Sottsass, Gehry, and others were also involved) and trams between 1994 and 2000. This was also seen in his ergonomic stainless steel door handles (Model FSB 1166) for the FSB company in Brakel in the late 1990s and his work on the design of a wide range of household appliances for the French manufacturer Rowenta in 2003. However, in 2000 he also worked with local craftsmen on a limited edition ceramic project commissioned for a French provincial museum, causing a certain amount of criticism in the crafts world on account of the rather ‘industrialized’ aesthetic of the resulting wares. In these years his work also featured prominently in the furniture fairs in Italy and Germany and in 2000 he was named Designer of the Year at the Paris Design Fair. In the following year his work was shown at the Design Museum, London, and in 2002 he opened a studio in Paris. There have been several books devoted to his work including one written by himself, Everything but the Walls (2002). He was elected a Royal Designer for Industry in 2001.

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.

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