Method In Madness

Interview by Caitlin de Laure
Photography by Jovian Lim

With accolades continually added to his name, his design firm and his furniture stores, Singaporean buyer turned designer, Nathan, requires no introduction. In 2009, he launched Grafunkt, a lifestyle brand that advocates quality design, with Jefery Kurniadidjaja. While the brand sources from both established and lesser known labels all over the world, they also have their own label, GFNKT, which aims to offer more value for good designs.

No stranger to collaboration, Grafunkt has partnered with H&M for Laneway 2015; HAY, the Danish furniture design label; and now, it has teamed up with IGC for yet another creative odyssey. Design is so thoughtfully woven into the fabric of the IGC store that every aspect is aesthetically sound on its own without diverting attention from the clothes.

Nathan tells us more about the origins of IGC × Grafunkt and achieving a conscious balance in the store space.

Apart from good design and people, what are some other things you have a passion for?

I like new wave indie music and music from the nineties. I play the drums as well because, first, I like music, and I feel that having an inclination for music is always a good thing, it keeps me relaxed. I just need to play for 15 to 20 minutes and it’s really good for the soul. It’s not that I’m stressed, but it’s more that the music gets into you in a different way.

For instance, when I design, there are different intensities, and when I play music, there are different intensities as well; I really enjoy that. The sensory experience is quite different when you play or listen to music and when you, with an analytical mind, are designing.

Since good is a subjective term, can you tell us what good design means to you?

Good design is something that is within my budget; that performs the function that I need in a clever way, be it the design solution, the construction or the right use of materials; and looks beautiful.

What are your sources of inspiration?

Personally, I feel that being irreverent and having a slightly twisted mind helps a lot. However, these characteristics themselves cannot cut it because inspiration is nothing if you do not have the technicality to act upon it.

Read more in The X Press N˚1.