Q+A With Gabriel Kakon & Scott Richler of Gabriel Scott
Gabriel Scott was started by Canadian brothers-in-law Gabriel Kakon and Scott Richler. They’ve created beautiful and unique lighting fixtures we love so we just had to know more about their design process and what goes into creating their handmade fixtures. So we sat down with the two designers to get the scoop on Gabriel Scott.
Who or what is your biggest source of inspiration?
Gabriel + Scott (G+S). We’re inspired by various art forms including architecture, fashion, and perhaps more directly through jewelry design.
Do you have any one piece in your home(s) – antique, vintage or new – that is your favorite? Why do you have such passion for it – does it elicit an emotional or aesthetic response?
(G+S). A very special piece for us that lives in our studio is the brass offcuts of our very first KELLY Chandelier. Random and asymmetrical cut-outs taken from an oversized plate of solid brass makes for a beautifully aged and sculptural grid. It also carries the significance in marking the debut of GABRIEL SCOTT.
How did you get into lighting design?
(G+S). We started out as architects and we were often commissioned to create custom furniture and lighting fixtures for our projects. We started to get more interested in that aspect of design. Our 2012 launch was truly an effort to focus solely on design and debuting our first collection of furniture and lighting pieces.
How did the invention of LED technology influence your designs?
(G+S). We’ve done an extraordinary amount of R&D with LED. Today, we can proudly say that we have developed our own LED system, which works seamlessly with all our lighting fixtures, and gives true warm light quality, through our unique blown glass diffusers.
What are your most favorite designs over the years?
(G+S). Hard to say – each of our pieces have their own distinct personality. However, we do appreciate the versatility of the WELLES Series, which has proven to be extremely flexible in its many iterations we have developed since its debut. Its modular nature has allowed us to work with clients in order to fulfill a unique silhouette or over-sized proportions. Just recently we’ve expanded on this series as we’ve introduced the WELLES Glass series, offering the same versatility and geometry, through an elegant mold-blown glass process and polished hardware detail.
What’s your creative design process?
(G+S). Our designs process is very collaborative. The direction starts with us (Gabriel & Scott) as we see what our clientele and our collection is seeking. The development course is a very harmonious one, which includes our incredible studio team. We spend months going through rigorous prototyping and R&D processes. We work to get each new product just right in order to fit our aesthetic, design-philosophy and our local production means.
What is your design philosophy?
(G+S). Keep it chic, keep it timeless!
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
(G+S). “Manufacture locally.”
We design and manufacture all our items at our Montreal Studio. It has been the best decision we have made thus far.
Why do you use metals as a medium relative to other materials?
(G+S). Coming from the world of architecture, design and jewelry, to us metal has always been a bold material. It is also extremely precise in its manufacturing processes as well as in its performance. (It won’t warp, react to various climates, etc.) It allows us to be creative in finding ways to be elegant yet bold. Light yet heavy. Masculine yet feminine.
My favorite vacation spot is…
Scott: The north
Gabriel: The south
I spend my weekends…
(G+S). Time with our family is always is a must – however we often find some time to drop in our SoHo showroom and open our doors to the neighborhood crowd. Its very sunny and relaxing, so we really enjoy spending time in that space!
Favorite social media outlet? Pinterest or Instagram?
(G+S). Definitely Instagram – it has become a such a great outlet to visually share our work, our process and our experiences with our clients and peers. Follow us @gabrielscott.
Do you have a particular project or design that stands out as particularly satisfying to you?
(G+S). A recent custom project in New York’s West Village called for a near 200-unit WELLES fixture to weave through beautifully complex staircase spanning over 4 stories tall. With extreme accuracy and clever engineering, we developed a winding and sculptural fixture that blossomed at the oversized skylight.
If you had any advice to give on what you think good design is, what would it be?
(G+S). Be honest, be clear and get creative.