“The Most Famous Industrial Designer in All the Americas”, as described by Time Magazines. Karim Rashid is a pioneer in futuristic designs. With a very unique style and color palette, his designs shape up his identity both as a designer and a person. Rashid is widely seen as very expressive in his work, which can be seen all over his 4000+ designs.
Born in Cairo to an Egyptian father and English mother, Rashid grew up in Canada, where he received a BA in Industrial Design from Carleton University in Ottawa in 1982. He won over 300 awards for his work including the IDSA Industrial Design Excellence award. His award-winning designs include projects for Asus, Samsung, Umbra, and Sony Ericsson. He has done interior design work in places such as the Semiramis hotel in Athens, the Università Metro Station in Naples, and the Nhow hotel in Berlin.
Apart from design, Karim is also an artist with all the meanings the word offers. He now lives in New York, where he manages his private art studio. His artwork is exhibited in numerous temporary and permanent exhibitions all over the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Karim Rashid is widely seen as a celebrity of design. He constantly posts selfies and photos through social media and shares his inspirations with the world. Moreover, his “Karimoji” set tells a lot about his self-love.
Karim developed his design style from an early age. Sci-fi movies like Solaris 1972, Her, and The Fifth Element worked as huge inspirations to him. Furhtermore, he even wants to create his own movie “THE PINKARIM” that he envisions it to be “a futuristic science fiction that portrays the future as the most beautiful place.”
His art inspirations come from contemporary and modern artists like Le Curbosier, Victor Vasarely, and Jean arp. Consequently, this strong interest in contemporary culture can be seen vividly in his designs as if he is trying to turn his favorite fantasy movies into reality.
“Don’t accumulate, I see that the problem with the world is that there is a lot commodity in the world and it’s easy to accumulate. Everything is so accessible and cheap now that we end up consuming for the sake of consumption and less for the sake of necessity.”
Rashid strongly opposes sticking to old traditional designs. He always refers to anything classical as kitsch; stating “I would not wear a classical watch, last time I did it was more than 20 years ago”. This feeds his approach to minimal designs, in which he neglects any excessive ornamentation, resulting in very bold design and art forms.
“I love colors that have the vibrancy and energy of our digital world.”
His perception of color is strictly about mood and energy. Moreover, Rashid is trying to masculinize the color Pink, or encourage the feminine side in men.
“Men all over the world are not into pink. I guess I’m the pioneer in it.”
When he was faced with the claim that he looks feminine because of his choice of color, he defended himself saying “it’s just a color, we should now overcome our old-fashioned ideas about inherited beliefs and trivia.”
Karim Rashid works in a variety of fields like: architecture, interior, fashion, products, and even music. His unique style makes it very easy to identify his designs from the first glance.
Miami Beach Condo
This 92 square meter condo was decorated by Karim. It has his signature sensual minimalist style with an open plan living space. The interior features a variety of products and appliances designed by Karim as well such as the Scavolini Ikon cabinets. Black and white Digipop patterns complimented the interior with Karim Rashid’s vibrant color palette. All the furniture in this space are Karim’s designs including: pink Zero desk, yellow Time, and mint Infinity couch.
This award winning design for Pepsi featured a sleek design with contemporary patterns for each product that pepsi offers. The design harmoniously blends both the identity of Karim with Pepsi’s iconic color tones for each of their products. Moreover, Karim worked on more designs for Pepsi such as thePepsi Nspire Campaigne vehicle and Pepsi MixItUp exhibition.
We must admit that Karim is such a huge inspiration, whether you agree with his design philosophy or not. It is very courageous to break the boundaries of old design habits and create new ones. In fact, he developed a very strong identity for himself by designing his own world.
We think designers like Karim Rashid are the ones who actually take the steps of developing the future further. Not through style, but through concept.