The series of dialogues between Sam Baron and Fabrica designers continues with the Lebanese creative, David Raffoul. I am very pleased to host this highly stimulating conversation, as it explores different cultural approaches in the design world.
Now that you are back in Lebanon after a full year at Fabrica, how do you see your country?
I can see its beauty with a new perspective. A year away at Fabrica has helped me see things I would not usually notice. Lebanon is a country with great potential and lots of things to say. And Beirut is a city that never ceases to surprise you, no matter how well you know it.
With Nicolas Moussallem, who was at ALBA school with you in Beirut, you founded the david/nicolas design agency, which represents a new generation of Lebanese designers.
What are your goals, and projects?
Our scope is very wide; we work as much on objects as on spaces, with private clients or international companies, like Vista Alegre Atlantis. We try to work on new and unique ideas, with the belief that a new character creates a new object.
Your ties with Italy also extend to collaborations with Italian companies. Today the clock you designed for Diamantini and Domeniconi is in the shops and seems to be a very successful Christmas gift! What was your concept behind that piece, how does the clock show your Lebanese soul in an everyday object?
Designing a clock for Diamantini and Domeniconi was a really nice challenge: mixing the identity of the brand with my own personality. The proportions and geometric forms are a way to express my Lebanese soul. In Lebanon, both the clock and TIME itself are really precious.
Fabrica recently launched the Secret Collection for the Carwan Gallery at the National Museum of Art in Beirut. How was the Fabrica interpretation of your country’s craft skills perceived?
We had an international vision, and it was exactly what we needed to see things differently. As result, we designed a collection describing characteristic moments and interpretations of things that happened during the trip, with a mix of aesthetics fused thanks to a coherent collective spirit. Fabrica is a kind of dream team where different cultures come together to discuss the same subject; this was the great thing when we were in Beirut.