Dezeen Magazine

Ilse Crawford discusses design and wellbeing in short film by Vola

Dezeen promotion: British designer Ilse Crawford features in the latest short film released by Danish tap manufacturer Vola, exploring the impact of design on human wellbeing.

The film, titled Wellness and Wellbeing, sees Crawford discuss how design can be effectively used to enrich our day-to-day interactions and "nudge" us into better behaviour.

"It's important to design for the senses because we are primal creatures and we read our environment through the senses," says Crawford in the film.

"They are what connects us to the world, no matter whether we feel that intelligence is a more valuable thing. I believe our senses are another intelligence."

Wellness and Wellbeing film by Vola, with Ilse Crawford

Crawford, who leads her own practice called Studioilse and was the founder of the Man and Wellbeing department at Design Academy Eindhoven, explains that considering the human aspect of projects has become crucial to her creative process.

"Design not only shapes the spaces that we're using every day, but also our experiences in those spaces. It's not just a visual thing, it's a thought process," she continued in the film.

Wellness and Wellbeing film by Vola, with Ilse Crawford

Crawford believes that wellness and wellbeing needs to be embedded in thinking throughout a project, with all details considered.

"In the end, the spaces that we use are really just backdrops to our lives, they're not the foreground. When you can make those small things considered, it makes a huge difference to daily life," she said.

"The world we make is always an expression of our values. And if you want to make matter matter those values have to be embedded from the very beginning."

In the film she talks about how design can help shape and shift values and behaviour: "In terms of health and wellness, it can create habits and rituals that can improve our lives," she added.

Wellness and Wellbeing film by Vola, with Ilse Crawford

The designer believes that these design sensibilities can be applied across the spectrum to both public and private spaces.

In bathrooms for example: "They give pleasure through the senses, and are places that we can be naked in and vulnerable; about a ritual of cleansing," she explained in the film.

"It's an area where, if we can bring that physicality back, it would give us a real connection to our physical selves."

Wellness and Wellbeing film by Vola, with Ilse Crawford

As well as offering a glimpse of Crawford's work studio, the film also offers viewers an intimate look into Ett Hem – a 12-room hotel that Studioilse created at the heart of Stockholm.

Occupying the former private residence of a government official, the hotel has been sensitively designed with a mix of vintage and modern furnishings to give it a cosy, welcoming ambience.

"We based the concept on the idea of warm and intelligent human contact throughout, and designed into that," said Crawford of the project.

Wellness and Wellbeing is the third film to feature on Vola's web-based platform On Design, which spotlights striking architecture projects from across the globe and shares insights from industry professionals.

The inaugural film showed Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen – founding partner of Norm Architects – delving into his experience of growing up in Denmark, and explaining how design is intrinsic to Danish culture.

Filmography is by Chris Turner.

Partnership content

This article was written by Dezeen for Vola as part of a partnership. Find out more about Dezeen partnership content here.