Edward Barber & Jay Osgerby


Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby founded their East London studio in 1996, after studying architecture together at the Royal College of Art. For more than two decades their work has challenged the boundaries of design in this country and abroad, while their commitment to lecturing, workshops and studio practice supports the development of new generations of designers. Barber and Osgerby’s approach is characterised by its emphasis on experimentation and innovation and an exploratory attitude to materiality and colour. From these areas of focus emerge solutions that reflect the close relationship of their work with industrial processes and new technologies, but also its affinities with fine art. The strength of Barber and Osgerby’s creative partnership has led to collaborations with some of the world’s most progressive companies and a diversity of output that encompasses architecture, interiors, sculpture, product and exhibition design, from collaborations with, among many brands, Flos (Tab and Bellhop), Vitra, or Classicon, to the design of the 2012 Olympic Torch. In 2017 Phaidon published a new monograph - Barber Osgerby, Projects - covering the designers first twenty years of practice. Amongst many professional accolades, Barber and Osgerby received the Jerwood prize in 2004, the status of Royal Designers for Industry in 2007, they were appointed to the Order of the British Empire, for services to the design industry in 2013, they were Designers of the Year at Maison&Objet in 2013, and guests of honour at the Stockholm Furniture Fair in 2016. Examples of their work are held in the permanent collections of the V&A and the Design Museum in London, the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Olympic Museum in Switzerland and the Vitra Design Museum in Germany. In 2001 Barber and Osgerby founded Universal to function in parallel with their primary studio. Focused on the fields of architecture, interiors, and exhibition design, Universal is now recognised as one of the world’s most innovative creative design consultancies. In 2012 the family of Barber Osgerby studios was extended again, with the launch of the strategy-based industrial design consultancy, Map.

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What is the next object you’d like to design? A lighthouse.