DESIGN SPOTLIGHT: ENY LEE PARKER for DESIGN SCENE MAG

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Furniture designer ENY LEE PARKER who lives in Savannah (Georgia) is for a good reason a definition of a designer-to-watch. Our editor KATARINA DJORIC sits down for an interview Eny and talks inspiration, materials and the future.

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Can you recall how or why you became a designer?

My mom is in the fashion industry and my father was a pattern maker. While growing up, they were very supportive of me being creative. It wasn’t until high school, my art teacher noticed I was good at drawing perspectives and pushed me into designing spaces. Obviously, that’s a silly reason, but worked out great!

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What comes first – the materials or the design idea?

Oh, it differs for every project.  Sometimes, I get an idea, some sort of story in my head first, and then I communicate it through my designs. Other times I play around with a particular material or technique, and find myself wanting to incorporate that into a project.

What inspires you to think of new designs? 

Travela. Sounds cliché, but visiting galleries and museums during those travels. I also like to observe how people use and identify with objects, so everyday behavior and mannerisms inspire me to come up with new things.

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What part of the process excites you the most?

I’m not sure this is the most exciting, but definitely an illuminating moment: when I finish the project, I like to sit and formally write about it – like a diary. It’s a fantastic feeling to allow yourself to meditate on your process, and formulate a conclusion.

It’s also great to see an abstract idea become a real tangible product, especially because I tend to have too many ideas, but only one becomes reality.

Are you working on any special new designs or projects at the moment? 

I’m in the middle of exploring and creating some base forms for dining, coffee, and side tables for a future project and installation.

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What makes your designs stand out?

I made-up this term I like to apply in my designs called “visual homograph”, which is a single object that is defined in two different perceptions, both sculptural and functional. While aiming to design objects that challenges their identity and purpose. 

Tell me more about your ceramics works?  

I took a class locally little over a year ago, and really enjoyed working with clay. It became very personal to me because I relate to its unpredictability. Ironically, I like my wheel thrown pieces to be very precise and perfect, which mirrors my personality. But like I said, clay is very unpredictable, so it is a great practice for me to accept my imperfect pieces- there’s beauty in that. I’m finally being able to incorporate the wheel into larger scale furniture, which I am very excited about!

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What do you enjoy doing apart from designing and making furniture?

I daydream a lot. That’s very enjoyable, sometimes they become reality which is even better. I love swing dancing, hosting dinners, having adult conversations with my dog Eames, talking shop and business with my creative friends, and just meeting people who are passionate about their work.   

Who are some of the other designers you admire?

I got to do a workshop led by Alex Groves from Swine Studio, and he’s brilliant, I respect his approach and brain. Constantin Brâncuși and Picasso are my heroes. I have Corbusier naked, painting on Eileen Gray’s house on my phone screen. The home accessories team behind Calvin Klein Home, Ana Kras’ swag, Rick Owen’s furniture line and Faye Toogood.

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What piece of furniture could you not live without?

A comfy sofa and throw-blanket.

What is next for you?

I’m taking one step at a time but I’ve been daydreaming on designing and building my home from ground up.

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For more of Eny’s work visit www.enyleeparker.com

 

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