Prominent Queenstown based furniture designer Ed Cruikshank is recognised for creating timeless and classic designs with a “home grown” personality,” made in New Zealand from sustainably sourced materials.
“I regard the design and objects I create as art as much as they are also furniture. Furniture design is not just a function of utility but an original creative process that is also making a statement as a piece of art. There is a growing acceptance that 3D objects including design furniture are equally valid as expressions of art and not limited to being utility items.”
There has been a resurgence of interest in Ed’s work in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Many people have re-evaluated what is important in life and this includes a renewed focus on human values and what makes people tick. New Zealand is no longer seen as a second choice and local designers are receiving the recognition they deserve,” he says. “ People realise they can have original furniture designed specifically for them rather than opting for mass produced copies.”
He says part of this shift has coincided with the disruption by Covid-19 to global supply chains and the support for New Zealand made, where shopping locally can be better both environmentally and financially.
Ed loves reflecting narratives in his design.
“My designs are usually inspired by stories of people I know or have created furniture for. Each piece of furniture has its own life and the scrapes, dents and worn smooth surfaces which are part of everyday living become embedded memories that grow richer and deeper with each generation.”
The journey from customer engagement to finished object is very much a personal one for Ed and his clients.
“For the most part they want me to create something that is unique to them – a deeply personal object that has special meaning in their family’s life. I have always been imbued with a sense of wanting to explore what is below the surface of ‘life’ as part of expressing the meaningful side of society and my designs reflect a quality that goes beyond the functionality of everyday pieces.”
The Cruikshank fusion of historic, contemporary and Kiwi style is helping shape not only homes around New Zealand and the world but also major corporate boardrooms, including the AMP head office in Sydney.
It is a fascinating story of bespoke designed furniture that crosses the boundary between practicality and art with everything built to endure by highly skilled New Zealand craftspeople, ensuring an outstanding product and experience.