Last Words

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By Aaron Britt
We put the same four questions to everyone we talked to for the Now 99 to learn what they’re inspired by and what they’re totally sick of. Read on for a glimpse into today’s design minds.

What was the first formative design object you experienced?

The lightsaber. When I was a kid I was thinking about a future where a company like DeWalt was producing lightsabers for the construction world. You could go up to a rock or a bunch of dirt and carve out your dwelling that way.—Mitchell Joachim, founding copresident of Terreform ONE

When I was young, my parents had two bright green plastic chairs. They were so much fun to climb over, sit upside-down on, and roll marbles across (around the seat, out the leg holes, and down the leg). I always liked them, and now I know they were Vico Magistretti's Gaudi chairs.—Max Lipsey

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What material are you most excited about this very instant?

Glass. It may not be new, but the possibilities of an almost invisible material remain endless. —Stanley Saitowitz, founder and design principal of Natoma Architects, Inc.

What design gimmick are you over?

The banal notion of a design hotel, as though design were some sort of optional extra. I really resent the notion of cashed-up corporates  investing in tasteless design garbage. Good hotels, whether it's a small B&B or a large business hotel, ought to have a shelf life of ten years or more to morally justify the outlay in materials and infrastructure. —Dennis Paphithis, founder of Aesop

What design object are you most anxious to redesign and why?

A street lamp. I'd combine it with an exercise machine to convert human energy to electrical power. —Decha Archjananun, THINKK

Click here for our extended Q&A.