Industrial designer Michael Young recently collaborated with Hong Kong-based furniture and lighting brand Manks to launch Michael Young Home, a collection of usable objects built with the intent of reducing the carbon footprint left behind by the creative industry. Young, a British designer based in Hong Kong, is known for designing contemporary objects that utilise the latest technological innovations. Under his eponymous studio, Young recently designed a series of furniture, lighting, and accessories that aim at subverting extant supply-chain systems by sourcing vernacular raw materials. The furniture collection, built with Manks, was launched on December 9, 2022.
“During the COVID-19 period, we had to address how to continue projects because we simply could no longer get hold of the things we required. It was really just a case of sitting there in amber until things improved or understanding how to change and move around. I think dodging around the streets in London back in the day set me up to handle this project,” Young shares.
Manks is a furniture brand that offers a space fit for platforming creative discovery while also curating an immersive and enjoyable experience. With an emphasis on Asia and Asia-centric creations, it also seeks to address current supply-chain problems in the region by utilising locally produced goods. The collection's development heavily focused on the maximisation of sales in China. For this, the best local practices were employed at every step of the supply chain. By utilising low-carbon materials sourced from renewable sources, all materials used for production take environmental impact into consideration. Straw fibre, for instance, makes up about 30 per cent of the composition that is used to shape each plastic object.
“When I first started heading to Hong Kong, I was always on the lookout for places to experience design. As it happened, Manks showcased both new and old Scandinavian design which is very close to my heart. It was always a pleasure to go there. It was like visiting a private museum. We had often talked about working together as like-minded spirits with the same tastes and natural friendships," says Young, delineating his 20-year association with the brand.
The collection is defined by features that define Michael Young’s personality, his way of life, and his interest in exploring art and design. An eclectic amalgamation of materials, craft, and technology, the collection tells the story of everyone involved in creating the rich cultural DNA that defines the chairs, tables, sculptures, vases, and sofas built under this collaborative practice.
Michael Young Home comprises a mix of recent pieces as well as vintage designs. While the 4A dining table and the new Sheffield couch collection exercise a dominant presence, bespoke ceramics and accessories, as well as the timeless designs of the Bramah and Joseph lighting collection, originally created for EOQ and recently acquired by Young, complete the collection.