Marcel Wanders Talks Design

DZINE Talks - Marcel Wanders

In our showroom recently, Marcel Wanders compared designing to the act of giving a gift: “A good gift is something you give from who you are. You give it from your soul.” This is how Wanders hopes to design – by making things that only he can give that reflect his culture, feelings and beliefs.

Wanders and his creative team have a strict vision when designing: “We fight modernism,” Wanders explains. “We fight the idea that the past is irrelevant to the future.” The modernist movement, established in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, dictated that form should follow function and emphasized the power of machines and mass production. It was an influential movement that was impacted by an increasingly industrialized society and touched not only design, but also art, literature, philosophy, music and theater.

How Wanders designs and how he thinks about design is fueled by his rejection of fundamentalism. He resists the idea that technology dictates creative expression; his goal is to replace “the coldness of industrialism” with the human touch. Wanders’ desire to bridge these two worlds and to find others who felt and thought the same ultimately led to the creation of his Amsterdam-based design studio, which today is made up of 60 creative minds. Their mission? “Here to create an environment of love, live with passion and make our most exciting dreams come true.”




It’s been a busy last couple of months for Wanders, who, after debuting Moooi’s 2016 collection at the Salone del Mobile furniture fair in Milan, spent a few weeks in San Francisco, where he visited design firms around the city and inaugurated Moooi’s representation at DZINE, before flying to New York City for ICFF.


Always on the move, Wanders and his team boast a portfolio of projects worldwide that encompass product design, art direction and interior design. Interior design enables Wanders to create things that are authentic and seem to inherently belong to a particular space, while art direction allows his team to work with photography to tell a story. Communicating the product to the consumer is key, explains Wanders. The object itself cannot simply “touch your brain or heart”; you need to understand the whole picture and everything that goes into it, which ultimately determines what you think and how you feel about it.

The creative mind behind many of Moooi’s product designs, Wanders attributes the company’s eclectic collection to its collaboration with some of the world’s leading designers, which include Bertjan Pot, Studio Job, Neri & Hu, Front, Umut Yamac, Paul Cocksedge, Maarten Baas and Maison Christian Lacroix. Wanders’ own designs are cutting-edge, playful, inspiring and unexpected, and can be summed up simply in his own words: “Life is more exciting if not constrained.”











Next: Moooi Comes to DZINE