Freedom to Design, Responsibility to Deliver


With freedom to design, comes big responsibility to deliver. Hans Susantio was lucky enough to be granted full reign in designing the new Amuz interior, where he also had the founding chef Gilles Marx put something to the table. Here is what Hans had to say about the collaboration and overall design process.

Hans Susantio

Could you tell us about the process of collaboration with Chef Gilles in creating the new Amuz?
The process started with a few meetings in which we created a fresh and brighter ambience without losing the French touch. We decided what colours that would represent the French feel.

How much input did Chef Gilles and the owner give you in the designing process? And what were the examples?
The input was simple, the design had to be based on the budget and the most important input was how to create this whole thing in only a two-month period of construction. In just 60 days we were able to do it by using structural design thinking.

As a designer I have to know what kind of design to apply that could be done in two months. That was the most crucial condition given by the owner. I could design anything according to my thoughts as long as it can be done in two months. “Freedom to do the design comes with responsibility to deliver”.

What was your involvement in creating the new menu presentation on the table?
I have my watercolour and ink sketches of four famous historical places in France printed on the showplates. The sketches were a result of discussion with the chef, to decide which ones we felt could represent the French feel. I was also involved in choosing the shape of the showplate along with the chef and the branding team. And now the original sketches are hung on the wall at Amuz.

What was the biggest challenge in the collaboration process?
The biggest challenge was.. There was not much, really. They fully trusted me and gave lots of space to create, as long as it could meet the deadline and within the budget given.

Any tips for young designers who are new in design collaborations?
Learn to listen and understand all input with your head, not with your ego. If you don’t have enough skill, don’t preach too much. Just listen and learn!

Design is a journey, it’s about what we can create under any given circumstances. A designer doesn’t only need to be creative, but also has to think in full circle, from the beginning to the end. Just like a film director. For instance, how they can obtain materials needed for the construction. If it’s impossible, how can they still get the ambiance without sacrificing the design in such a limited time? So, design is something very complex.

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Vira Tanka
Having her bachelor degree from Visual Communication Design of Bandung Institute of Technology, she explored her other interest in writing by being a writer for TV programs and travel magazines. Always keeping her love for the art, she actively sketches just about everything, from urban landscape to nature, in between writing projects.