“ALL OF My PROJECTS ARE A TRIBUTE TO MATERIALS AND THEIR QUALITIES.”

THE LOCAL-FRIENDLY DESIGNER, sebastıan herkner utılızes desıgn as a source of COMMUNICATION IN THE SENSE OF OPENNESS, CURIOSITY AND EMPATHY WITH PEOPLE AND BETWEEN THEIR CULTURES. HE THINKS VERY HIGHLY OF MASTER CRAFTSMEN, and local producers.

“I have been using bright colors since my earliest sketches because they are part of the project’s identity and they strengthen its character.”

ITALY AND SALONE DEL MOBILE HAVE BEEN CRUCIAL TO HIS CAREER AND THIS YEAR, TEN YEARS AFTER THE OPENING OF HIS DESIGN FIRM IN OFFENBACH AM MAIN, HE IS BRINGING PROJECTS AND PRODUCTS TO MILAN for renowned brands such as MOROSO, DEDON, CLASSICON, LINTELOO, KUNDALINI, PULPO, AMES, ROSENTHAL, and EDITION VAN TREECK.

“after several debuts ın salone de mobıle, within 4-5 years, I went from designing in my apartment as a student to having a proper design studio with several clients.”

Herkner has a tendency for designing products that are not simply a marketing strategy or trend, but furniture and objects for which there is genuinely a need and which people want to keep for a lifetime. For Herkner, it is a great honor for designers to see their own works in the homes of ‘normal’ people, who choose them and may have to save up to buy them.

“This is why I aim to design products that age well and develop a beautiful patina over time, made from high-quality materials using artisan techniques.”

sebastıan herkner.

from offenbach am maın, germany.

"embeddıng socıety and culture ınto desıgn."


Material selection is a vital subject in Herkner’s creations. He picks ‘real’, high-quality materials that will last for a long time, made in collaboration with small companies that create specialized products, made from glass or ceramic for example. A good example is the Bell Table (2009), that has a clear blown glass base. Herkner found it interesting to collaborate with glass-blowing artisans and, in a certain sense, to go against current trends by creating something truly new. To rethink the product and make it unique.

After much consideration, when I have clear ideas, I begin to draw sketches, then we move on to cardboard models and renderings. Next begins the work with the client, proceeding with prototypes and continuous adjustments until the 2D idea becomes a three-dimensional object. This process can go on for years, so I generally work with clients with whom I can build a good relationship, even on a personal level.”

Amongst Herkner’s most recent 2017 collections are; the Caribe furniture Collection Designed for Ames, and Pastille side tables designed for the glass manufacturer Edition Van Treeck.

“I fell in love with the idea of working with Colombian craftsmen, after seeing furniture in the country made using traditional techniques.”

The Caribe Collection is produced by craftsmen in Santa Marta, Colombia, using a traditional technique many learn at school. The collection, which has been made for German furniture manufacturer Ames, uses bright contrasting weaving to bring a ‘Caribbean mood’ to interiors. Strands of brightly-colored plastic are wrapped around a tubular steel framework to form interlaced tabletops and seats. Each piece from the collection is hand-woven in one of six color combinations, including bright contrasts between orange and blue, and green and pink.

The Pastille Side tables are suspended drops of colored glass which found their inspiration in the particularity of the glass fusing technique. Through the process the perfectly cut glass circles are transformed: their contours get blurred, the clear and strong colors become delicate shades. Melting into each other, new colors are created.