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Buy Local: Projector Design

A day on the job with Projector Design and a look at what these two have up their sleeves for summer

By Tory Healy
Photography by Naomi Finlay

Though old friends, neither Matt Conacher (right) nor Chris Stevenson of Projector Design could have forecasted the mighty reception of their first co-designed product. When their compact 001 desk with beveled edges and off-centre drawer was introduced at the Interior Design Show, orders flowed into their retail partner, Inabstracto at 1160 Queen Street West. The formaldehyde-free worktop, finished in low-VOC and water-based lacquer, rests on a steel base. 001 desk, $2,100. Various finishes available.

DL: What is PD working on now?
MC: This summer, Chris and I will be busy prototyping some new ideas that we hope to launch by the fall. It’s definitely an exciting time in the studio.
CS: We’re working on an interactive light piece that will punctuate space in a whole new way, and we’re introducing seating that brings an element of the playground into the home.

DL: What is the best thing about summer in this city?
MC: Now that I have a young family, many of the things that I’ll be doing are kid-friendly, such as picnics in Trinity Bellwoods Park or dancing at the Dakota Tavern’s Bluegrass Brunch. I’ll ride my bike through the city and see which way the wind blows.
CS: I love the heat. An hour on the Trinity Bellwoods asphalt tennis courts, iced coffee at the White Squirrel Coffee Shop and a Queen West gallery jaunt with my family.

DL: Name a Toronto talent worth keeping an eye on.
MC: Christina Zeidler. I particularly love her lenticular campfire boxes, available at MADE. Her work as an artistic collaborator facilitates a dialog between various Toronto-based artists and designers through such events as Come Up to My Room.
CS: Matt and Susan Gorbet of Gorbet Design. As interactive art designers, their installations for airports, hotels and galleries tell stories in new and exciting ways and bring technology together with experimental design. Their enthusiasm is infectious.

DL: Who is your all-time favourite artist or designer?
MC: Marcel Duchamp continues to inspire me on a creative (and somewhat romanticized) level – I love the idea of creating a community of artists, designers, urban planners, activists, etc., that have the power to provoke change.
CS: I respect so many. Konstantin Grcic, because his work is so technically solid, and I desperately want his studio. In Canada, I love Montreal’s Samare Studio, for bringing babiche (traditional rawhide webbing found in snowshoes and canoes) to modern furniture pieces.

DL: If money were not an issue, what would you buy locally, right now?
MC: While exhibiting at the Interior Design Show last January, I saw a beautifully crafted bench by Heidi Earnshaw that I would love to put in my front hallway.
CS: If money were not an issue, I’d make the trip to Avenue Road on Eastern Avenue with a truck. And before I drove it home nearly full, I’d visit Castor Design, to ask for one of their Deadstock Catherine lamps. (Thank you for that little fantasy).

DL: When the weather is gorgeous, how do you stay productive?
MC: When I’m head-down into a project I love, it’s not too hard to remain focused on the task at hand. That said, on those beautiful summer afternoons when (most) of my work is done, it’s not too hard to find an excuse to hit the nearest patio…
CS: Throw open the windows and doors, and let the breeze take me to the end of the day.


Categories: Local Act
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