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03 April 2012
5 Minutes with... PHUNK
The multidisciplinary collective chats about current and dream projects, their rock and roll ethos, and more…
The members of PHUNK – Alvin Tan, Melvin Chee, William Chan and Jackson Tan – first met at LASALLE College of the Arts where they found that they shared similar interests from Chinese mythology to British indie music and American pop culture. When an attempt at forming a music band did not materialise, they began to design. Today, PHUNK is one of the most successful experimental hybrid studios in Singapore focussed on new visual forms of expression.
PHUNK’s clients are diverse and include MTV, Nike, Diesel, The Rolling Stones and Herman Miller (the REACH project), just to name a few.
Rolling Stones X PHUNK artist collaboration T-shirts
Describe your design philosophy.
Projects you are busy with at the moment.
Moving to our new studio/gallery in Tanjong Katong. Working on a new series of artworks for an upcoming solo gallery show in Taiwan, an ongoing design project with Herman Miller and an artist collaboration project with Disney.
Top 3 influences.
Love, Dream, Faith.
The moment you knew you wanted to be a designer.
When we were in school, we actually wanted to start a rock band – that was the original intention of PHUNK – so we went to the studio to jam, but then we realised that our music… sucked. We designed better covers for our albums than the music. So what we did was take that rock and roll ethos and DIY spirit, and transfer it to PHUNK.
Favourite local landmark/building.
Haw Par Villa.
Favourite international landmark/building.
Gaudi's La Sagrada Familia in Barcelona.
Dream project to work on – real or imaginary.
Building our own imaginary City of Dreams, ELECTRICITY.
Dream person to collaborate with.
Leonardo Da Vinci or Walt Disney.
Favourite decade of design.
The 80s... Mac Classic, Walkman, Nike Air Force One, the Mullet hairstyle, Pac-Man, i-D magazine and Peter Saville's album cover artworks for New Order.
New World Triptych
The classic Eames Lounge Chair.
Number 1 concern for the design industry in the coming decade.
The end of print.
One item in the workplace you can’t live without.
The most unusual/interesting thing about the way you work.
We work like a band.
Also check out our previous interview with PHUNK here.