Looking for design: Boris AnthonyJune 21, 2007
I met Boris Anthony very briefly at Xtech in Paris last month and was thrilled to learn that he lived and worked in Montreal. Aged 32, he’s a self-defined “Web technology and design specialist, hyper-connector”.
On top of that, he was also in part responsible for organising Montreal’s very own Pecha Kucha. I thought he would be the perfect candidate for the “Looking for design” project and asked him a few questions about his views of the world of design in Montreal.
How long have you been working professionally in the world of design in Montreal?
11 years (all on my own, except for a 3 year corporate position in Laval. You need to experience hell in order to avoid it ;)
If you’ve worked a lot abroad, what triggered that decision (versus staying in Montreal)?
Variety, different perspectives from different cultures, travel, more activity
Is design well understood in Montreal?
The overwhelming sense I get here is that design is pigeonholed as Graphic/Multimedia/Web Design, Interior Design/Urbanism/Architecture and Product Design. These are all applications of design, and are all certainly worthy of recognition, but the underlying raison d’être, the soul of design appears to me sort of lost. Isn’t design solving a problem or finding a solution? Why do we concentrate purely on design for immediate, established commercial exploitation? Where is the forward thinking development of ways to live in and with the future? Which is here now, as you know.
What keywords come to mind when you think about design in Montreal?
“Can you do my website/party flyer/kitchen?!?!”
What is missing from the Montreal design scene?
Perspective and vision. We all need to stop, take a step back, look around, listen and learn.
Part of that is also, I think there is a lack of broader awareness. I am constantly shocked to find people are totally ignorant of what others around them are doing, especially across fields.
What would you say is the hardest thing about working in design in Montreal?
Getting out of Montreal. This place is just so comfortable and laid back, it can all too easily soften one’s ambitions and drive.
What would you say is the best thing about working in design in Montreal?
See above. ;)
Where do the opportunities lie for the future of design in Montreal?
“Asia. It changes everything.”
If you had the choice to work somewhere else where would it be?
Tokyo, Shanghai, Bangkok.