Carl Silvester

Placement at QUEST


In 2007 Quest 1 brought together nine designers from the UK and the Netherlands and two companies, BGB Engineering and Smith of Derby in the East Midlands. The aim of the project was two-fold, to enable the manufacturing companies to explore big picture issues through a process of blue sky thinking; and to support designers to develop extended portfolio experience within businesses.

Quest 1 - in which Arts Council East Midlands collaborated with the Dutch organisation Young Designers & Industry (YDI)  - was a knowledge transfer laboratory that travelled between the Netherlands and East Midlands.

It had a simple methodology. Following the selection of the businesses and designers, there were three workshops in the UK and the Netherlands. The first workshop introduced the businesses to the designers and set the ‘quests’.

The second workshop in Amsterdam showcased examples of designers working with businesses in new ways and saw the designers present their first responses and spend time in designers’studios. At the third workshop at The Hub in the East Midlands the designers presented their final concepts to the companies, who were able to choose one idea or concept each to take forward for further working. The designers worked in groups and presented collaboratively.

Two teams were selected to take their initial proposals forward. Carl Silvester and Michael Marriott were selected to develop the Smith of Derby proposal to the next design stage. See Documents and Images for more about their ideas.

Carl Silvester (East Midlands)
Carl Silvester’s low cost, accessible and conceptually critical view for `experimental’ products arose from being frustrated with the limitations of conventional roles for the industrial designer in the development of technological artefacts. He also has an interest in combining the new psychological and behavioural possibilities offered through technological products. His overall aim is to improve interaction and create a personal relationship between object and owner.

'By using design I am able to develop something that makes an essential contribution to society, which resolves everyday problems or reflects or comments upon them: perhaps in the form of a product but sometimes a system or guide to tackling familiar things differently. I have enjoyed collaborations previously with musicians, lenticular manufacturers and the Dutch government - with outcomes including products made using selective laser sintering as well as illustrating a new role for a person in society.’