Fabien Cappello

Finalist in 2012 for Product Design

Capello’s work is very much a marriage of art and design. Wherever he finds himself he absorbs the culture and context around him and melds it into his work. “Design practice does not exist alone, nor can it be seen purely as an exercise in creating self contained objects. The designer and the practice of design have to be understood as intrinsic parts of wider systems.”
As an example, Capello spent a month in the Korean University of Cultural Heritage where he designed and made furniture for the terrace of a temporary village café. The result presents traditional Korean craft techniques alongside contemporary design. He was subsequently asked by the RCA to turn the design of these benches and tables into furniture for commercial production.
In Venice he combined brick and glass in a striking series of Murano glass pieces that reflect the cultural heritage of local crafts in the context of a sinking city.
“I connect – rather than draw – things, ideas, people, and compose new situations. I am looking for what is not used, not valued, not looked at and I try to reveal unexpected qualities.” His graduate show at the Royal College of Art featured a Christmas Tree Project, where re recycled some of London’s 1.8 million abandoned Christmas trees into carefully crafted pieces of furniture.
“I love to think about the relationship and connections between my brain and my hands. Designing together. None being superior to the other. The imaginative thinking working with the rational making, and the other way around.”