TOM STRALA (CH)

Related Projects: Belgrade Design Week Festival 2014

Tom Strala (ne Thomas Michael Schmid) was born 1974 in Zürich. He finished his architecture studies at the ETH in 2001 with the award „Erich Degen Reise-stipendium“ (travel stipend). Since 2002 Tom Strala successfully leads his own studio based in Zürich‘s Seefeld. In 2006 his series of TMS-lights was awarded with „Europe‘s Luminaire of the Year”. In the next years several exhibitions in renowned museums, galeries, and universitities followed – juries and lectureships like at the CCA (California College of the Arts), San Francisco USA.

The world is complex – so what?
Many designers demand from their works an abundance of complex criteria. Major roles of this behavior play global, commercial, politic problems, as well as formal, mental visions, and market psychological and economic parameters. Their justification: the world has developed and connected in an imense speed. They claim that these influences of our era are unified in their work. Because art has always been capturing the zeitgeist.

This idea is nice, and ok… but completely irrelevant. The people have to start dreaming again. Art does not need any complex problem solving. We need passion. We need desire. No well-tempered Everything and Nothing. No new update of our operation system. We need intensity, and this cannot be found in a compromise. That’s the DNA of humans – that’s the DNA of Strala.

http://www.strala.ch/

Running in the morning through the city (down what the germans call a fussgangerzone) and being amazed by all the grand empty old buildings that reminded me of my Berlin beginnings. Grafitti on buildings. Lovely broken walls with acne'd facades from decades of reverse engineering. Discovering that all the ships on the river were party boats and open till the morning. Sweating so much in one of the clubs, my phone got messed up. Losing phone in said club. Visiting belgrade police station to report a then stolen phone to a twenty-something cop with a doctor's lab coat, listening to Rammstein (loudly) while hacking out my report on a pre-electric typewriter that looked (and sounded) as if it was from some era before typewriters were invented.   Thinking of Naked Lunch. Thinking of Die-Hard. Listening to architects talk about porous facades. Thinking of old smart bombs. Imagining the flash and crunch of several floors of reinforced concrete collapsing in on themselves. Wondering why I'm the only interactive guy here. Why are there so many beautiful women in Belgrade? Why are there so many beautiful women in Belgrade?!

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