HRISTO SAVOV

Tell us a bit about yourself:

My name is Hristo Savov, I was born in Varna, but graduated the National Arts Academy in Sofia.

Do you remember what you dreamt of becoming when you were a child?

A cosmonaut.

Is there anyone in particular who has influenced your professional development?

My father.

How would you describe your work?

Independent.

Tell us more about your work process:

I draw at any time and in any place when I’m in a creative mood. I use sketchbooks and markers and pens. I draw quickly, in one breath.

Who are some of the other Bulgarian designers whose work you admire and follow?

Neva Balnikova, Zlatimir Arakliev, Viktor Kulvachev, Kamen Kalev.

What is the professional achievement you are most proud of? 

That I managed to find my own direction to follow and build on.

What is your dream project?

To draw a comic book.

What are some of your most recent plans and projects?

To continue drawing and developing my work.

ELIA NEDKOV

Tell us a bit about yourself:

I was born in Yambol, and graduated the High School of Mathematics in Sofia, but I wanted to be an artist. I painted for many years with the idea of applying to the National Academy of Arts. But life had different plans for me and right after high school I found myself in West Berlin (when there were still two parts – western and eastern). I settled finally in Austria. That was where I gradually got drawn to fashion, fabrics and clean details. And I graduated fashion in Vienna only to realize I was much more intrigued by architecture. So I went to study architecture in Graz. When I opened my own studio in 1997 all those various interests combined together under the common denominator of design, be it architectural, product or graphic.

Do you remember what you dreamt of becoming when you were a child?

Yes, to be a painter and an artist overall.

Is there anyone in particular who has influenced your professional development?

Life is changing constantly. I’ve been impressed by various things in my different periods of professional development. In fashion, for example, at the beginning of the 90-s, I was truly impressed by the Japanese trend set up by Issey Miyake, Yoshi Yamamoto andRei Kawakubo. In architecture, the names would be Le Corbusier, Oscar Niemeyer, Alberto Campo Baeza, Tadao Ando, Luis Barragan. I like Antonini’s movies. The winning of a certain international competition back in 2003 gave me the possibility to open my own studio in Milan, where I began to seriously develop my professional career.

How would you describe your work?

I look for the value, and I skip the effective tricks.  I try to approach the topic in a sensitive and delicate manner, and in the same time I want to implement and deliver a sense of sophistication. My style is restrained, but refined.

Tell us more about your work process:

My approach is architectural. From large scale to small scale, from the generals to the details. Usually my studio is the place where I live. Things overflow. I love my job so it’s not a burden to me. I like letting things mature gradually – either in my sketchbook or in the form of a prototype. I observe them and change them with time, discard the unnecessary, refine them. I often renew old sketches and try to realize them. Very often I think of spaces, volumes and surfaces in their primary form.

I don’t follow a rule when it comes to choosing when to work – during the day or the night. Sometimes I have to work all night, but this is usually the last stage of the project. Once I’m there, there’s no calming down until I finish it. But there are times when it takes time until the project ripens and this may take a lot of time.

I also don’t follow working hours or days. I try to treat with the same respect both pleasure and work responsibilities. For me, it’s all part of the process and I can not split it. A walk can be more valuable than countless hours in front of the computer. I like to surprise myself and run away from the routine.

Who are some of the other Bulgarian designers whose work you admire and follow?

It would be too much to say I’m following somebody in particular at the moment. But I like the work of Ani Vasseva and her theatre group meteor, Neva Balnikova and Nikolay Sardamov, and as a designer – Viktor Vassilev.

What is the professional achievement you are most proud of? 

In my role as an art director of the brand Viero. I transformed it completely, starting from zero and the results are such that they keep me satisfied, happy and willing to upgrade my work for the brand over the years.

What is your dream project?

Every new project is very important to me. I’m open to new tasks and try staying away from cliches.

What are some of your most recent plans and projects?

I,m not waiting for something to come. For me – there is now and what has to come – will do so. But what is now, can became a creative project if I put my conscious and responsibility. I hope to be able to continue to putting into practice what I feel like my style in architecture, design and everything else.

What do you expect from your Milano participation?

To share with the audience what has moved me.

DENITZA BOYADZHIEVA

Tell us a bit about yourself:

My name is Denitza Boyadzhieva. I was born in Sofia where I currently live. I graduated the National Arts Academy, department of industrial design. I think I followed my father’s example subconsciously. He exercised his hobby of producing furniture pieces for the household and to repair damaged devices. I remember a bookshelf for the sound amplifier and for the tape recorder, which he invented. First I saw it in pink color (it was whale paint) and I thought it was for me. After awhile I saw the final result, which was powder coated in dark brown color. I thought it was from the shop – the shelf looked so perfect.

Do you remember what you dreamt of becoming when you were a child?

As a child I often dreamt of becoming a ballerina or a sales person, but my fondest and brightest memory is of my wish to be a veterinarian. To help the animals and travel the world, just like Dr. Doolittle.

Is there anyone in particular who has influenced your professional development?

Everything changed for me when I went to study one semester in Finland. I found a completely different world totally new to me. I learnt how important teamwork is. That everyone is different and good at something that maybe someone else is not, but that does not mean you suck. The professors always found a way to show you in the work process that what you are doing is valuable – no matter whether it is crap or a good thing. Everyone has a certain potential.

How would you describe your work?

I don’t have a certain style, never had and never will, as this puts limits to my work.

Tell us more about your work process:

The working place is always mobile. I have one kit of instruments, which often appears either in the kitchen or in the living room (jigsaw, drill, flex, grinder). Recently, I’ve been trying to set up a designated working space – a very important part of completing the puzzle. I’m used to listening to my intuition. Among the many sketches I usually end choosing the first ones. I’m quite impulsive and sometimes make big mistakes. Afterwards, I try solving them and while searching for a solution – the inventions happen. So, this is not a part of the process to be missed.

I often work in the evenings as this is the most quiet time of the day. My dog Fiut keeps me company. Otherwise, I like collaborating with Daniela from Garderob. We have similar views. She is very apt and has an exquisite touch, while I contribute with the technical aspect. When it comes to materials – I use the same intuitive approach. Recently, I found a new material for me – aluminum and I’m quite impressed by its possibilities.

Who are some of the other Bulgarian designers whose work you admire and follow?

Thank god, recently there are more and more Bulgarian designers who do interesting things. I’ll not try naming them because I’m afraid I might miss someone.

What is the professional achievement you are most proud of? 

I cannot say exactly what i’m most proud of, but my most recent achievement is the invention and production of shoes with Daniela from Garderob. The material we have chosen – evapren is a microporous rubber for the shoe industry, I have known and used it for 6-7 years now but for other purposes. Interestingly enough, this time we are using it according to its original designation. We are trying to make a series of shoes ready to wear.

What is your dream project?

Every new project is such.

What are some of your most recent plans and projects?

I’m currently developing a series of aluminum lighting fixtures. The production is entirely manual and is done by a man with 50 years experience with lathe. I am very impressed by his work and he is a true master. Hopefully, I’ll be able to show the project very soon.

The other project I have undertaken recently is going to be realized through the Kickstarter platform. It’s about a stool made out of corrugated cardboard which is called “ONE PCS” – one piece stool. Its name comes from the fact that it was made from a single sheet of five-layered corrugated cardboard. You don’t need any tools in order to assemble it. You just have to follow the folding lines. I believe that the project has a lot of potential, because the chair is made out of recycled paper and is very light, and in the same time very durable.

What do you expect from your Milano participation?

I expect not to expect anything of Milano.