Modern Contemporary Design


2 (or 3) Questions for Palette Industries


Having just returned to their native Calgary from IMM Cologne where they showed the Camus Lamp, we had a couple of questions for Palette Industries. We’ve been following their work for a while now and wanted to know what they saw at the show and more about their fixation with the poetics of design. Founded in 2005, Palette Industries has “set out to substantiate a multidisciplinary approach to design. Palette brings together a group of three talented individuals, Nathan Tremblay, Ian Campana and Samuel Ho to create a diverse perspective on our ever changing surroundings.”

More after the jump.


Some of your work seems to be inspired by the written word and poetics?

The exploration of the written word came from our desire to inject theories, stories and concepts into substance rich objects. By creating a tangible object, we can bring concepts of text and poetics into a new polysensorial means of enrichment. Much like the written word, beyond superficial appearances, our designs are innately flawed on their own, only by constructing unique situations where the end user takes the seeded idea and explores their own embedded narratives and interpretations of the object, does it finally breathe life beyond just form and function. P.S. We are great story tellers!


There appears to be an element of Canadiana in some of your pieces as well…

You design what you know. Surrounded by multi-cultural traditions all converging into one large melting pot can lead to an identity crisis or it can lead to an exciting opportunity to explore what it means to be Canadian. Canadiana is quite unique and whimsical because we generally don’t try to take ourselves too seriously. Our international fans love that we are Canadian; we are proud of who we are and try not to hide it. We are excited to be a part of the new crop of designers that have made Canadian design a force to be reckoned with.


Castor Vase.

You guys attended IMM Cologne this year, what was the best thing you saw there?

Probably this 12 meter long, four ton table made from a single slab cut from a massive petrified tree from New Zealand, and designed by Mario Botta, it was quite the show stopper.


Palette Industries is an interesting name.

The name is a play of words on the homonym of a painter’s palette, the palate related to taste, and the skid pallet used to support movement. These all relate to the work we do, so it was fitting that we chose this name. The industries part was so we would never limit ourselves to a certain discipline.


Palette Industries (left to right): Ian Campana, Nathan Tremblay, and Samuel Ho.


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