Kitchen & Bathrooms Design Report 2011: Karim Rashid 19.08.11

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Balance", "joy", "sensibility" – probably not words at the forefront of the minds of most designers of kitchen appliances. But of course Karim Rashid is no ordinary kitchen designer, and the collection he has designed for Slovenian manufacturer Gorenje displays the same desire to find the beauty in everyday objects that he brings to whatever he is designing, from chairs and waste baskets to corporate logos or restaurant interiors.

"In a modern kitchen, appliances are the central expressive element of design and the most appealing feature of the space," he says. "I wanted to create an innovative design to turn even the most challenging culinary endeavours into playful creations and pure aesthetic pleasure. The kitchen is referred to as 'the heart of the home' and I embraced the opportunity to take what is often a banal archetype of kitchenware, and turn it into appliances that offer a multi-sensorial, elegant and delightful experience."

This understated induction hob is one of the most recent additions to the collection, and it demonstrates Rashid's minimalist approach to kitchens. He prefers, he says, to create clean striking surfaces, punctuated by splashes of strong colour or pattern – he particularly likes the LED light strip in his oven door, which allows the owner to change the colour to match their mood.

"I love to use colour and pattern in my work as a way to stimulate the senses. With the Gorenje hobs I approached with the same philosophy, but I didn't want the appliances to overwhelm the senses. Rather, I allowed myself to keep the base of the form simple and stunning, adding accents like the LED MoodLite strip, and the organic lines of the hobs."

Rashid's famous for wearing pink, but white is his second-favourite colour: "I love white for so many reasons. Firstly I feel optimistic. I feel liberated. I feel free. It is energetic, fulgent, engaging, positive and full of light and vitality, and I wanted to bring all these things to the design of the appliances."

Rashid's connection to the kitchen is heartfelt. He says both he and his wife Ivana love cooking and eating – simple Mediterranean food, her mother's Serbian recipes, organic salads and lots of grilled fish, washed down 
with red wines from Chile and Argentina. And for dessert: "Ivana makes great organic banana bread, the best I have ever tasted in my life."

 

Image

Karim Rashid

 

Words

Katie Puckett

quotes story

In a modern kitchen, appliances are the central expressive element of design and the most appealing feature of the space

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