Thursday, February 25, 2010

Karim Rashid by Amanda Burdge, Nashville Interior Designer

Karim Rashid is one of the most innovative designers of our time. He has conquered over 3000 designs and has an astonishing 300 awards! Working in over 35 countries his award winning designs include democratic objects such as the ubiquitous Garbo waste can and Oh Chair for Umbra, interiors such as the Morimoto restaurant, Philadelphia and Semiramis hotel, Athens and exhibitions for Deutsche Bank and Audi. Karim has collaborated with clients to create democratic design for Method and Dirt Devil, furniture for Artemide and Magis, brand identity for Citibank and Hyundai, high tech products for LaCie and Samsung, and luxury goods for Veuve Clicquot and Swarovski, to name a few. Karim's work is featured in 20 permanent collections and he exhibits art in galleries world wide. Karim is a perennial winner of the Red Dot award, Chicago Athenaeum Good Design award, I.D. Magazine Annual Design Review, IDSA Industrial Design Excellence award. You can read more on this prolific designer from his website,

I had the honor and the privilege (keep in mind it doesn't take much to get me excited) to meet Mr Rashid in October while at Highpoint Market. I was familiar with his work, however completely unaware of ALL his accomplishments. His laid back Q & A was extremely engaging, not to mention his uber cool attire. (he mentioned traveling an astonishing 300 days a year, he NEVER checks luggage, and only travels with one suit!) Listening to all his ideas on how his team came to build a cell phone, or design a vacuum, or develop a chair was very inspiring. Never a dull moment Mr Rashid is not only a "creative", but very articulate and well traveled; his ideas fascinated me. (I thought my 50 something year old mother was going to pass out from boredom. She just wanted to know where the food was, and if they had ANY booze) I truly believe she thought he was an alien. But she's a left brain and couldn't possibly understand. Here are a few of my favorite things he has designed.

SOUNDWAVE FLO by Karim Rashid

Felt sound absorption panel by OFFECCT

Flo is designed to be used as lightweight sound absorbers in the upper frequency range (500 Hz and above). These panels help reduce disturbing reflections of environmental sounds such as voices, telephones etc.
KANDOR chair
"Sincere", "honest simplicity" and "research into purity of form" are, says Karim Rashid, at the basis of Kandor's design. This swivel chair is perfect for a modern workspace, but also for a young, colorful home environment.

Rashid Poly Chair

The Poly chair as in “polycarbonate”, the material from which the chair is entirely made, through a process of injection moulding with a particularly large and powerful press.Three different prototypes were created during the planning stage with the aim of obtaining the maximum level of comfort for the seat and a perfect degree of inclination for the chair back: together with virtual testing of the chair’s mechanical resistance in order to satisfy resistance criteria for CATAS certification.Poly has a young, original, geometric design. Both chair and back are made of different surfaces that intersect and yet the chair as a whole does not appear angular. It looks inviting and comfortable and this aesthetic impression is confirmed by the comfort of the seat.Poly can be stacked and is also suitable for external and contract use. It comes in a variety of colours and finishes: transparent, semi-transparent pink, semi-transparent lime and black and white shiny versions.

VOLCOINO: When is a piggy bank not a piggy bank? When it's designed by Karim Rashid. Volcoino is designer Karim Rashid's interpretation of a piggy bank for those of us who like sculpural forms instead of literal representation of a piggy bank.

The Dirt Devil KONE™ is a cordless hand held vacuum cleaner unlike any you've seen. Dirt Devil had famed product designer Karim Rashid create an elegant, sculptural form that can be left on display - on your table, shelf, or counter. The cone shape means that the vac is always stored in its base, so your hand vac will always be charged and always ready.


  1. I wonder if he will be there in April..... Are you going to the next one ?

  2. He is brilliant indeed!


  3. You are so funny with your mom story! Great post on Karim's work.

  4. Thanks for commenting,luving that clear Rashid poly chair in pink & green!
    I am thinking easter, or summer.

  5. Does he know Z Gallerie just knocked off his Poly chair? :)

  6. The cone is one of my cleaning tools- it works for everything!

  7. Oh my goodness! The first picture says it all~he is too cool for school. I adore him.

    The soundwave flo is ingenius.

  8. Really, this man has done everything! I've had his trash bins, and a variety of his chairs, over the years.

  9. Wow, what a talent, and great story about your mom. Thanks for sharing

  10. OMG, how I would have liked to be there. The man is an icon... and OMG he can pull off design like no tomorrow and he can pull off glasses like Sir E.

    Thank you and good luck to your American Olympic athletes, you guys are making medals look easy. Except for hockey, Canada, hockey, yes....
    we're the land of ice.

  11. I would love to know how he was as a little boy.

  12. The Volcoino is a great item and a great name :-) Not sure if the vacuum appeals to me more because it's cool or because it's purple ;-)

    Sorry to hear you were having trouble leaving a comment on our blog. I don't know if it was a problem with Blogger or our blog itself. Thanks for being persistent!!


  13. How awesome to meet him! I love his work and have a couple of his designs. LOVE this post!

  14. Amanda, love that you featured Karim, his works are astounding.


  15. Huge fan of the lavender KONE Dirt Devil. Esp. since crumbs are a constant in our home {3 boys}!

  16. A wonderful post about a wonderful designer.
    Great information.

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