Nyomi Warren

Q: How did you start making art?

A: I find myself honored to be a part of this ‘student artist collect,’ however, I am not an artist. I am unsure if I am the only one who is not, but I am a designer. I conceptualize and create ideas to solve a problem. I find myself now a soon-to-be graduate from Penn State’s Graphic Design program. How did I get here? My mom has always been my biggest fan, just as she has always been my superstar. She played clarinet as a child, so I played clarinet throughout middle school. She was a graphic designer in early life, and I found myself in a graphic design class in high school. This class did not come close to truly defining design or teaching designs potential; rather we learned Adobe Illustrator and made posters. But we did enough that I felt inclined to pursue design in college, and I couldn’t be more thankful.

Q: What does "being creative" mean to you?

A: ‘Being creative’ means exploring solutions in new reimagined ways. Sometimes this mean recycling a
solution that’s out there, but doing it better, or being completely innovative.

Q: What is your most important tool?

A: I’d say my ability to trust myself. With design you have to be able to believe in the idea and your capabilities to complete any project, and to complete it well, and often fast.

Q: What would be your dream job?

A: My dream job is anything that allows me to do what I love while also being conscious, and a voice in the movements that are at the forefront of our society today.

Q: Describe your first reaction to the piece of furniture. 

A: When I received the OYO in the mail, I first had to assemble it. It was simple, just two pieces, however the shape was so odd for a chair it took me a moment to orient it correctly. Once it was together me, my mom, and my dad took turns sitting in it and rocking gently. It was unique and exciting!

 

My initial concept was birthed from research, as all concepts should be. As a ergonomic chair, I wanted the visual I created to express the chairs ability to transform the sitter to a new setting. I put the chair in the trunk of my mom’s car and drove to the beach, a playground and an art gallery. Many people looked, and attempted to object, but I was on a mission! I placed the chair at the water, the end of a slide, and in front of several paintings to create a series of three posters. Which together would show the chair's relaxing comfort, playfulness and art form. Once editing the images and looking at the collective, I was unsatisfied. I felt as though the chairs shape was it’s best feature. So instead I hung a white bed sheet in my dinning room after moving all the furniture. I placed the chair in front of it and took many flash photos from many angles. The images were flat, high contrast and the rather sexy curves of the OYO were now present. They evoked a sense of mystery, and with the addition of bold, round, black letter forms, the modernity of the piece was exemplified.

Q: Is furniture art?

A: Furniture is definitely within the world of art and design, and draws inspiration from both.

Q: What are some of the most inspiring things happening in design today?

A: The most inspiring movement within the world of furniture today (to me) is the effort to be environmentally conscious. Innovative work is spawning from the use of recycled pieces or what some may consider trash. This is also allowing anyone to try making anything out of found objects.

Q: What is the best piece of advice you've been given?

A: The best piece of advice I’ve been given.. came recently actually from Andy Alvarez. And that was to just do you, and that’s what makes you a valuable asset, because nobody else is you.

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NYOMI WARREN