Design Trends – An Interview with Alvin Tjitrowirjo


Founder & Creative Director of alvinT

Good Design Indonesia (GDI) for Mekar Coffee Table, 2021

@alvin_tjitrowirjo |

What was the most common request from your clients during the pandemic?
During the pandemic we identified that many of our clients started to understand and look for designs with more value, and I don’t mean expensive, but designs that are made with strong intention, high-quality craftmanship and a more authentic character. Sustainability has also become an important issue, even though unfortunately in Indonesia it is still often used as a gimmick, not properly implemented yet. lastly, products made in Indonesia have gained popularity amongst Indonesians.

What can we expect from the future and from the next product design trends?
Artistically, we are not following certain design trends anymore. Sustainability has literally become the main factor in judging a creation. Whether or not it uses locally sourced materials and handmade with high-quality craftmanship is important, especially now.

We are transitioning towards the post- industrialisation era, where products aren’t produced in bulk and not just for financial profit. All designs will embrace the sense of locality: local materials, local wisdom, local stories or philosophies, local aesthetics, and tackle local challenges. Forget about disposable, low-quality products. These aren’t relevant with the problems the world is facing now.

Please share how you anticipate these trends.
We are starting to reduce our production. For the latest collection, we will only produce one-off items because we want to make sure all our products get our fullest intention and are made to the highest quality. We want them to inspire and impart values that will make us better human beings.

our latest creation, a bench called Dahan, was made as a one-off item. The design was meant to remind people that the item originated from something that was alive, which was a plant, and the shape resembles a tree branch. We still strive to use local materials. For Dahan, we used manau and tohiti rattan, which are very good quality.

We prioritise working closely with local craftsmen. We want them to feel proud and satisfied with their work. And it’s important that they are paid fairly, which incentivises them to pass their skills on to the next generation.

Alvin Tjitrowirjo

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