Award-winning designer Joe Paine has carved a unique niche for himself with his innovative and absolutely gorgeous vessels for growing and displaying pot plants… and some of his latest work can be seen at The Club. We quizzed the design superstar on the whys and hows.
You are a qualified industrial designer, right? What turned you on to this quite unexpected niche of creating edgy pot-plant containers?
Yes indeed, I finished my studies in 2004. I started designing for plants in 2008, when I noticed that there were no planters on the market. Plants are nature’s works of art and I try make plinths to adequately show them off.
Your most well-known work is probably still the Kreep Planter, which won Elle Décor’s International Design Award – 10 years on it is still a hugely desirable piece. How does one improve on such a winning design; has the Kreep planter evolved over the last decade?
I think the Kreep Planter has done so well due to it being an original design that exists nowhere else. It fulfils the need to add green coverage to your interior or exterior spaces. It has not gone through much evolution in terms of its basic function, with only the pots’ materials and sizes changing. A refinement of the unit is due to be released next year.
How did the commission for The Club come about? What was the brief?
I was lucky to be contacted by the very talented team at Reddeco Interiors with a concept to add the large planters to fill a semi-outdoor space at The Club. The initial concept was eight planters that were upscaled versions of my Drippp Planter range.
And how did you interpret that brief – what did you have to consider when you looked at the space where the pots would be used?
I kept to the brief in terms of Reddeco’s vision, but made slight material, aesthetic and technical changes. The units needed to be lightweight but in the same breath have the volume and presence to pull off the intended result.
These pots are huge! What was the most challenging part of this project?
Yes! The scale is impressive, but the most challenging part was learning the production process needed to produce these particular units, and this delayed the completion. Atterbury was very patient with my high learning curve, and I am so thankful for their confidence. The quality and aesthetics of the units I hope make it worth it.
But there’s more! Your range includes indoor and outdoor furniture too, all quite modernist in style. What inspires you when it comes to design?
My design aesthetic is formed through an understanding that the product’s function, materials and production process need to marry with how we as humans interact with the world around us. I try to make products that reflect who we are at a specific point in time. The original concept is more important to me than satisfying what the market thinks it wants.
What is your favourite material to work in and why?
I really enjoying working in steel. Steel can be formed in so many ways which offers the designer elegant solutions to solving problems. Steel is also very easily recycled.
What’s next from Joe Paine? Is there a design challenge that you want to solve that you are currently working on?
I have a few new concepts I am working on for 2020, but I am typically over-critical of them which predictably always delays their release.
For more on Joe Paine design, visit www.joepaine.com and Instagram, @joepaine_studio