Top 100 Marcel Wanders Quotes

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“I collect memories. I look for opportunities to try new things, go to new places, and meet new people all the time.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Amsterdam lives and breathes creativity. One moment you walk into a building from the 17th century, and the next you find yourself in a hub of creative start-up companies.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Whatever you put around yourself, you will be the mirror of it. Surround yourself with things you love.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I am quite familiar with Dubai and its design scene. I have been a regular visitor for more than 10 years. It is hard to name an area where hospitality, friendship, culture, ambition, and beauty are so highly regarded.”

― Marcel Wanders

“What’s special about Amsterdam is that the city is able to connect worlds that are not otherwise connected.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Luxury is not about the things that you own. It is about something that reflects your personal values, something that shows the choices that you have made in your life.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I wanted to go beyond the sentiments and needs of daily life to create a sense of wonder and find a new space for design.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Amsterdam is a breeding ground for new creative pursuits in many areas fueled by a tolerance and openness to ideas unlike any world city I’ve been to. There is something for everyone here, especially when you dare to go off the beaten path.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Design, by definition, is an eco-friendly activity, as its aim is to create objects which are meaningful and durable. Trends always cost resources, but a true designer creates wares which will remain relevant forever.”

― Marcel Wanders

“You can go to any second-hand store and get an amazing piece – I have pieces from flea markets at home. You don’t need to buy throwaway furniture.”

― Marcel Wanders

“If I have any basic motivation, it’s to inspire people to make their life a masterpiece.”

― Marcel Wanders

“San Francisco is a lot like Amsterdam – free, open-minded and casual – though I expected better weather.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I like transparency. I love to have views throughout the house.”

― Marcel Wanders

“A product can live on one great idea. An interior needs 1,000 great ideas to really live, which makes interior design a whole orchestration of this art of juxtaposition, placement, and combination.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Great design is so many things all at the same time. It is emotional, functional, and responsive. It creates an unwritten dialogue, a connection, between itself and those who experience it. It is open to interpretation yet created for a specific purpose. It creates meaning and value.”

― Marcel Wanders

“To me, relaxing doesn’t mean that we play ding-dong songs and look at a wall of bamboo. It’s just completely unoriginal.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Every project has its own logic and parameters. In some objects, functionality is primary, and in others, it is rather inconsequential.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The fundamental dogma of Modernism – that, if the past is irrelevant to the future, then today is irrelevant to tomorrow – has created a throwaway society of disposable objects. That is sick.”

― Marcel Wanders

“People like their handbag more than their sofa, and I hate it.”

― Marcel Wanders

“My mom and dad had a store, and sometimes people would return broken stuff. I’d take it apart and reassemble it. At 16, I really understood the architecture of things.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Inspiration has become this word that people tend to talk about as something from the outside. The truth is that… it is inside, like a burning fire: it is the feeling of certainty that your life has a meaning and you’ll do something important.”

― Marcel Wanders

“M.A.C. stands for makeup, art, and cosmetics. We’re about bringing all these worlds together – makeup, design, fashion.”

― Marcel Wanders

“When you look at the work you do every day, you do see things. But if you look at the work you did for 25 years, suddenly you start to get a more complete picture.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The works we do in Moooi are very diverse, very eclectic. That’s how we like it.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I think architects design outside in. Or they design basically outside. They don’t get in the building anymore.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The ‘Dezeen’s of this world are extremely inspirational but have no realistic dimension any more.”

― Marcel Wanders

“That word ‘fantasy’ – I hardly ever hear it in the world of design. And that’s very strange. You should hear it a lot. I think fantasy is a very important value that designers and artists should bring to the world.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Humor has the tendency to be funny once. If I tell you a joke, we’re going to have a big laugh. But the second time I tell the joke, it’s going to be a bit strange, and the third time you’re going to ask if there’s something wrong with me. So I am very cautious with jokes, but there is a lightness in my work.”

― Marcel Wanders

“If you acquire things, you have to let them go.”

― Marcel Wanders

“In my studio, I forbid people to work if they have a down day.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I’m 100 percent sure the love and energy we give to a project will end up inside of it. I think it’s important that when we work on something, we do it with positive intentions, because this energy will be sensed in the design.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I’m not a person who regrets – it doesn’t make me smarter to regret something.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I’m not the type of person who feels bad about things before. I choose what to do at the moment, and I have a very good reason for it; otherwise, I don’t do it. If later my feelings change, I should celebrate now by being more wise, not feel bad about before.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The very best design, I feel, is that which resonates so deeply that people can’t help but discover something within themselves when they see it.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I think what makes me different is that… I am comfortable with expressing my vulnerability. I think designers often want to just put the loveable ideas out there. Ones that are imaginative but not very introspective. It is more rare for a designer to explore his or her disappointments and moments of disillusion and doubt.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I want to create a body of work that is really, deeply important to people. One of the vehicles I use is business.”

― Marcel Wanders

“If I look at my own growth, I started in product design. And we grew and created new products, and we were also able to change the idea of design a few times.”

― Marcel Wanders

“There are many design companies, but there are few designers who organize their own business and open it up to other designers.”

― Marcel Wanders

“A lot of companies are able to do without design. A few companies are able to do without creativity. A very few. Creativity is crucial to your business.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Often, I’m sitting opposite a client, and I’m thinking, ‘How do I convince him to not copy the best-selling product out there?’ And sometimes I don’t know. Really, it’s smarter to be a thief.”

― Marcel Wanders

“A lot of my work is intelligent, a lot of the work is beautiful, but I make ugly things, too.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Beauty is very important, but it’s not the most important thing in the world.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I really feel that design has the capacity to communicate, and I really have concentrated on the communication of positive values.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Everything has been done. It’s not possible to create something completely new, something that has never been seen before. It’s only possible to make new combinations, establish new connections between things we usually take for granted.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I love Milano. Historically, the city is the biggest intellectual design thinking container. It is the cradle of design as well as the hometown of the mothers of its important heroes.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I’ve turned into something of a health nut.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I have 60 people working for me in my studio. That’s luxury if you ask me. I just dream. Tell those people that I want a certain thing. Those people will then invest days, and sometimes months, in bringing that idea to life. What more could you ask for? That’s luxury for me.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Everything has been thought of before… the real problem is to think of it again.”

― Marcel Wanders

“When I had just finished my degree show, I wrote down the 10 companies that I most wanted to work with, and B&B Italia was on the top of the list.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I like my products to be smart in a technical way but to show the time invested in their creation, too.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Normally I don’t care so much about food. I’m more interested in the people I’m with.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I like to find areas where design has not yet gone.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I want to make sure people are connected with the future as well as the past.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Food can be a material, and you can use it as a way to project concepts.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Food has always been at the frontier of creativity.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I wear mascara sometimes, a little lip gloss.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Some people have a concept of design: that it should be without the maker. I have been educated in this way, the traditional way. But I am not naive. I know that we make my things, and that people want them. I am signing them – and I am winking at them.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I like to be the jester – he is the only one the king doesn’t question.”

― Marcel Wanders

“An object should elicit desire, and often it happens not because people need it but because they love it.”

― Marcel Wanders

“My design always has a political agenda. When I borrow components from various cultures and juxtapose them in an object, it is a message that co-existence is indeed possible. Design creates an ideal world where different ideas live close to each other in perfect harmony.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Beauty is only about relationships. Nothing is beautiful on its own.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Nothing grows old faster than the new.”

― Marcel Wanders

“By training, I’m an engineer, but I don’t tell anyone because it bores people.”

― Marcel Wanders

“There is no one I’d like to exclude when I design. It’s not like I’m trying to design for everyone. Probably can’t do that. Yet I try not to exclude anyone.”

― Marcel Wanders

“To transfer food into a bowl from a pan that you’ve just cooked in, it’s a loss of energy; it’s wasteful. People think it’s very sophisticated, I don’t think it’s so smart.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The one thing we should address is how design can play a role in the psychological durability of objects, to think of how objects can be engineered in a way that they will be good over time.”

― Marcel Wanders

“If we want a world that is truly sustainable, we have to realize that something old can also be perfect. Otherwise, we’ll just throw away our yesterday.”

― Marcel Wanders

“When I was a student, my first luxury purchase was a drafting table. It may not seem like a major purchase, but for me, it was the most important thing I could think of to spend my money on.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Being open to the unexpected allows me to bring so much to my craft.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I listen to a variety of music. I like everything from old Arabic music to Portuguese fados.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Why would you spend your life and your time doing something that’s insignificant?”

― Marcel Wanders

“Nobody’s interested in something that could’ve been done before.”

― Marcel Wanders

“So much in design is presented as a big miracle when it’s just a repetition of what’s been happening for 80 years.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The things I own are sacred.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Opulence doesn’t cost more than boring.”

― Marcel Wanders

“In tech, people want an object for what’s inside it, what it does. You need to make a defensive design that people won’t walk away from. A chair is aggressive – you want a customer to choose it from many others.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I don’t just want to create products. I want to reach into people’s hearts and minds. I want to create memories.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I can’t be boring. If people like my designs, then meet me and find out that I’m boring, they won’t want my stuff.”

― Marcel Wanders

“If something is functional, you no longer think about it. I care about how meaningful things are.”

― Marcel Wanders

“A good gift celebrates the relationship between the giver and the receiver. When you open that box, you feel like, ‘Wow, you really understood me.’ At the same time, you think this gift could come only from that person.”

― Marcel Wanders

“We should make things that people don’t want to throw away.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I have been a designer all my life, and design, for me, is to share love and trust and show the future in a beautiful way. I have worked on this principle all my life.”

― Marcel Wanders

“There is always a reason behind things that are made, and if there isn’t, there will be one when they travel through the world. The objects of beauty are used to impress, seduce, overwhelm, make money, support identities, and show power or style, among other things.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I think design is the expression of its time and culture.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I want to create a world with objects and surroundings that are human, more romantic, and less sterile.”

― Marcel Wanders

“As humans, we are not so rationalist as we think we are. I think our biggest quality is indeed that we are human, truly human: if our biggest quality would be rationality, we would lose our soul.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I have a long list of how people call me: ‘The Prince of Design,’ ‘Beethoven of Design,’ ‘the Dutch Prince of Design’ and the list goes on and on and on… and also the ‘Lady Gaga of Design!’ I am fine with it. I think she is an amazing character who has innovated the music scene and is respected by so many people; she is surprising.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Designers have been uncreative and very arrogant. They need to listen to people. People have always wanted more exciting, interesting design, but we designers didn’t see it.”

― Marcel Wanders

“My parents weren’t cultured people.”

― Marcel Wanders

“For me, true kitsch has nothing to do with irony. It’s very honest. It represents what people like, their dreams.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I like swimming. I like the beach. I like fast cars. I like speedboats.”

― Marcel Wanders

“When I wrote my book about Amsterdam, the main objective was to talk about the city’s creativity rather than just its design.”

― Marcel Wanders

“When I make chairs, they have legs; they can go anywhere in the world. Interiors are a different responsibility. A house is a representation of where you are, and it has to be right for the place.”

― Marcel Wanders

“The need to express yourself in Los Angeles makes the city so vibrant. If I lived here, it would be lovely to be in a cool new high-rise looking out over a city that is exploding.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Modernism is an outmoded way of thinking about design: it just doesn’t reflect the way we live now. It always puts forward this idea that the past is irrelevant to tomorrow – and tomorrow is all that matters. But the past is part of who we are.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Whether or not you like an object, it’s the product of an individual person making decisions about things. That’s what makes it interesting.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Function is fundamental to design, of course. If something doesn’t work, it’s a bad product, and I certainly get frustrated by things that aren’t functional. But there has to be more than function. A house has to function, but if that’s all it does, you don’t love it.”

― Marcel Wanders

“I’ve always liked the idea of making things that last forever, not necessarily in the sense of being unbreakable, but more psychologically permanent. Most people throw stuff away not because it’s broken but because their relationship with that object is broken.”

― Marcel Wanders

“We are buying stuff we know we don’t need, and that is a problem we should face in design. It starts with creating an object that transports through time a valuable idea: that it can live forever.”

― Marcel Wanders

“Ambition is a beautiful thing.”

― Marcel Wanders
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