SEARCH

Designer Ashley Sutton reveals his approach to crafting bars and clubs

by Leona Liu on Feb 6, 2018 in Interiors , Top Story
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on Sina WeiboShare on Tencent WeiboEmail this to someone

Albert Einstein famously said, "Imagination is more important than knowledge". Australian self-taught interior designer Ashley Sutton, responsible for some of Asia's most eccentric nightlife destinations, such as Ophelia and Iron Fairies in both Bangkok and Hong Kong, is a firm believer in that maxim. He talks to Perspective about his recent work

Why did you become a designer?
It was never my intention to be a designer, I only wanted to build boats growing up. I fell into design by mistake – I used to manufacture fairies and I wanted to create a good working space which represented my Iron Fairies books that I had previously written. At the same time, I wanted to help my staff understand what they were making to inspire them, so I created a 'fairy factory'. People loved the space and would come in and watch us making the fairies. Eventually, landlords started coming to me and asking me to create spaces for them, too.

Ashley Sutton is known for his whimsical design experiences

Designer Ashley Sutton is known for his whimsical creations

How would you describe your style?
Detailed and whimsical.

From where do you draw your inspirations?
From my mind. Anything can inspire me, but most of my concepts have been in my mind for years. I'm constantly reworking them in my head and usually, once I see a location, one of my concepts will fall into place and I'll refine the concept to the space.

What does good design mean to you?
Something practical yet looks amazing to the eye; something where people can lose themselves in the experience.

What do you think of first when creating interiors?
I look at the location and think about how to create an experience around it.

Which architects or designers do you particularly admire?
Joyce Wang. I've come across her work during my time in Hong Kong and I like her style.

How did the design process evolve for your most recent project, Yojimbo in Hong Kong?
It was kept as a bar/nightclub because of the location, existing facilities and the time frame. As the space is quite intimate, it reminded me of a lot of the nightclubs in Ginza, from the time when I was designing Iron Fairies in Tokyo. I find Japanese culture fascinating and it inspired me to create Yojimbo, which is the coming together of my interpretation of underground Japanese clubs (many of which are very minimalistic) and Japanese pop culture, which is showcased in the entertainment.

This is an excerpt from “Space imaginator", an article from the January/February issue of Perspective magazine.
To continue reading, get your copy of Perspective.
, , , , ,

Recent Posts

  • r_hjortshoj_-_noma_web-332_original

    NOMA 2.0


    The award-winning restaurant worked with BIG to create a new home and restaurant village just outside of Copenhagen’s city center

    Posted on Oct 15, 2018
    View
  • Lacime Architects

    Poetic justice


    Traditional Suzhou architectural forms are reborn in the award-winning Dajia community villas by Lacime Architects

    Posted on Oct 9, 2018
    View
  • DSC_4035

    Prison break


    Perspective takes a closer look at Hong Kong’s largest revitalisation project, Tai Kwun: from colonial-era relic to 21st-century hub for art and culture

    Posted on Oct 6, 2018
    View
  • 9. The Hall

    Run of the mills


    The Mills – a new cultural complex, creative co-working space and start-up hub pays homage to Hong Kong’s golden era in the textile industry

    Posted on Oct 4, 2018
    View
Top