Design Indaba videos: 5.5 designers



Design Indaba 09: the ninth video in this series from the Design Indaba conference and expo in Cape Town last month features young Paris studio 5.5 designers.

In the movie, the four designers talk about their work together over the last five and a half years.


Here's some more information from Design Indaba:


5.5 designers at Design Indaba 2009

Paris’s 5.5 designers are using humour, production processes and conceptual rigour to question the status of the designer. Not even thirty years old yet, the 5.5 designers have a sizeable portfolio of work that embodies their quirky take on what it really means to be a designer and what responsibility designers have. Comprising Vincent Baranger, Anthony Lebosse, Claire Renard and Jean-Sebastien Blanc, the quadruplet will be turning five-and-a-half years old at this year’s Milan Furniture Fair.


“When you work in a team, it’s impossible to just talk about shape or colour. Who can be sure whether green or yellow is the best colour? So to eliminate this choice and introduce new ideas, we try to work on the ‘way we design’ instead of working on ‘designing’. Each project starts from a story that we build around information or demands from a company, and that story informs each decision for the project,” explained Lebosse.


About 5.5 designers:

Since 2003, 5.5 designers have established an enviable reputation, being awarded the Grand Prix de la Création by the Paris City Council after just three years of business. Far from focusing only on shaping objects, 5.5 designers enforce a conceptual rigour that sees them permanently question their design status. As such, they continually seek to create honest and accessible consumption alternatives that sublimate the ordinary.

Using this approach – together with humour and simplicity – their work has been sought out by a host of brands and editors, be it for luxury or mass production. The team comprises Vincent Baranger, Anthony Lebossé, Claire Renard and Jean-Sébastien Blanc.

Posted on Monday March 16th 2009 at 3:22 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • It could be cool to do something new dears 5.5… you still do again and again the same things !

  • Wybie

    haha that is so fun

  • BRian

    All I want to know is why Designers use the Software update designations: I think we have to DESIGN our own designation- if that is not Geeky enough!

    YEs this is FUN!


  • Prof ZUY ask you a question :for you , are the 5, 5 designers (4 young french designers) , french touch?

  • Joanna

    you´re a joke… hahahaha, so funny…

  • SUki

    5.5 are design students gone too far flogging to death one liner design to gullable companies.

  • step_out_of_a_triangle_and_into_striped_light

    totally agree suki. it won’t last for long.

  • 5.5 designers are not students…

  • Xit

    I don’t think you understand the sense of the phrase Zuy I think Suki means “design students gone too far” as in they have taken their student “one liner” approach too far in a professional context.

    Although fun and laid back, I often find their projects represent the 5.5 not actually knowing how to really resolve a ‘real’ problem with a ‘real ‘ design proposition.

  • I dunnot understand, Starck is a designer and do you think he resolved a real problem with his jucy salif lemon squizzer or with hot Berta kettle for Alessi …or with his black chandelier for Baccarat…

  • step_out_of_a_triangle_and_into_striped_light

    enough with the starck already. sheesh!

  • Xit

    Agree with Triangle Starck is Starck and yada yada yada.

    Why compare everyone to Starck, find some more appropriate parallels.

  • elisabet

    I hate being critical, since I think it is very hard to be a young design studio and that what people really need is encouragement. But, that said, I wish that 5.5 would stop with their rant against Form, Style, Shape, Beauty, and Colour.

    It think it is very important that objects and products have a smart concept behind them, and that the entire system of production and making be considered ‘a part of good design’. But it always comes off as a bit juvenile and regressive to say that the visual and sensual matters of objects and products are things that they ‘do not engage with’ as a matter of their identity as a studio.

    Whether or not they admit it, they certainly have some kind of particular touch and look. Sometimes I think they would benefit by addressing the final look and feel of their furniture more, and developing their skill in that department, but more importantly, it seems silly to deny that this is one of the things they are responsible for in each project.

    Eitherway, I think that Form, Formalism, Colour, Identity are ALWAYs part of design, and it is just arrogant to say that those are petty matters. I feel it is particularly important to say that now because with the current economic recession, I think there is a lot of hate towards beauty which is just dumb-ass. Its already hard enough having lost my job recently, but the idea that everything has to be ugly-in-style inorder to be considered non-excessive is even more depressing..

    But much force to you, young design studio 5.5! Takes alot of guts to go out on your own and for that I have much respect.