Johan Lundin is Managing Director of leading architectural firm White Arkitekter’s Gothenburg office. He doesn’t attend every fair, but he felt the time was right this year.
“I wanted to come and get a sense of which way the wind is blowing. You have to now and then.”
And what is your conclusion?
“There is a lot of talk about reuse and recycling right now. The whole industry is taking note that we can’t just produce and discard – we have to establish a healthier attitude toward objects.
“We’re currently working on a major project where up to 90% is recycled. It’s quite a bold move. The key, of course, is to have a process chain that can handle this. It’s a huge challenge, not least when it comes to procurement.
“Recycling is more difficult and complex than producing from scratch, which goes against what many people think. Quality is essential as you still have to be able to provide guarantees for reused items. This is all in its infancy right now, but it is set to mature very well.
“For example, we’ve drawn up a proposed agreement for what we call recycling royalties. This means that if a batch of chairs in reusable condition is returned to the supplier, the designer should also be brought back in to maybe make a few tweaks or to look at the colors and so on, rather than just doing more of the same. And then there needs to be some form of supplementary royalty if the chair is sold again! It’s something we have in the pipeline.”
You have a presence in many countries. Where do you think Scandinavian design stands in the world today?
“I think we’re heading for a new boom, because we’re such a long way ahead on sustainability. Scandinavian design has a good reputation overall. I predict a bright future.”