Leah Ring - Another Human
Leah Ring Launched her L.A based practice Another Human in 2017. She creates one-of-a-kind objects, furniture, and jewellery aimed at challenging traditional constructs of form, proportion and materiality. By employing sculptural lines and luxe materials, Another Human aims to create art you can truly live with, from furniture that doubles as a display case and tabletop objects steeped in metaphysical meaning to playful hand-sculpted wearables.
How important do you think your working and home environment are to you? ... for example is the work you make reflected in your personal space?
I think it's important to create an environment that is conducive to free creative thought and for me, it's quite important to surround myself with things that inspire me (work environment) or calm me down (home environment) and above all, make me happy (both!) A few of my product designs have been a result of functional needs I had in my space for which I couldn't find a product I liked (namely - my Stacks bench and Tubular Magazine Rack) so in that regard my personal space has been influential in my design process. Being a visual person, I just want things around me that bring me joy and that drives everything.
What do you think has informed your personal aesthetic?
So many things! The way my brain works, I'm drawn first and foremost to particular shapes and materials (right now I want everything in my life to be shiny) and then I start to think about how I can combine shapes and materials that I like in a unique way to make a product. I love pouring over vintage design books (books from the 80's in particular) and wandering the aisles at Home Depot - I find construction materials and industrial materials to be really inspiring, especially when you try to reimagine them through the lens of luxury product design. I love the juxtaposition of high and low in that sense.
Do you collect anything/ have a favourite object?
I don't collect anything, per se, but I have started accumulating vintage light fixtures that I hope to someday have a home for.
Are you coveting anything particular at the moment?
I'm obsessed with Jochen Holz's neon work - I recently saw one of his neon pieces at Casa Perfect here in LA and kept coming back to it all night...it was just mesmerizing.
What is your opinion on taste and style?
Taste and style are so subjective - to me the most compelling designers/artists are the ones who really strive to do something completely different. Whether or not I personally like the output, I so admire the drive to explore new visual territory.
Are you interested trends, both in and out of your field?
As much as I try to avoid trends, I think in this digital age we're all susceptible to trends...in some way or another they're going to seep into our subconscious via all of the stuff we see on Instagram, Pinterest, design blogs, etc. As an interior designer, it's harder to avoid trends because clients will come to the table with their ideas of what they want their space to look like (which is often informed by what is trending at the moment.) As a product designer, I'm more free to just make whatever pops into my brain and while I certainly want to be aware of the visual trends in my industry, I want to design products that will hold their own for years to come and not scream...."that piece was designed in 2018! year of the (insert trend here)!"
Do you have a dream project or client?
I would love to design a hotel because it provides you with the opportunity to design so many types of spaces (bedrooms, dining rooms, lounges) and because the space isn't meant to be inhabited permanently, you can push the boundaries of design further.
Do you have a project that was a turning point in finding your creative path?
My path to where I am now has been quite circuitous, but I think all of my steps along the way were valuable in crafting my goals for my creative career.
How important is collaboration to you?
I typically work alone but I would love to collaborate with other designers. My group of friends in LA is full of all sorts of creatives, so luckily I can bounce ideas around with friends.
Where is your favourite place to be?
I love hiking up to the Griffith Observatory early in the morning so I can watch the sun rise over Los Angeles - it really makes me feel connected to the city in a special way.
Form, function or fantasy?
All of them - but I always start with fantasy!