"In every movement, whether you like it or not, at the end of the day it’s about individuals; it’s not about movements... And I’m not into designing just anything. For me, to design something is to do something that was not there before I did it." ~ Ron Arad

Early Life

Born in Tel AvivIsrael, to a Jewish family. He studied at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalembetween 1971–73, and at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London from 1974-79. Ron Arad co-founded the design and production studio One Off in 1981 with Caroline Thorman. Ron Arad Associates architecture and design practice was formed in 1989 and in 2008 Ron Arad Architects was established alongside Ron Arad Associates, with Caroline Thorman and Asa Bruno. His brother is the violist and educator Atar Arad.

 

DEsign

Arad's career as a designer began with the Rover chair, a leather car seat of a Rover p6 anchored on a tubular steel frame. His works are often worked into distinctive biomorphic shapes and are created from steel, which is his medium of choice. His subsequent and tireless experimentation with the possibilities of materials and technology, and his radical re-conception of the form and structure of objects large and small, has put him at the forefront of contemporary design and architecture.

 

Ron Arad was awarded the Royal Designer for Industry (RDI) in 2002, in recognition of his ‘sustained excellence in aesthetic and efficient design for industry’, and was awarded the London Design Medal in 2011. He was professor of Design at the Hochschule in Vienna from 1994 to 1997.

 

Arad was Head of Design Products Department at the Royal College of Art from 1997 to 2009. He designed in 1994 the Bookworm bookshelf, which is still in production by the Italian company Kartell. In 2005, Arad designed chandeliers for the Swarovski crystal company which if one has the number, can display text messages that are sent to it by incorporating light-emitting diodes (LEDs) operated by SMS text messages. In 2009, he was made Professor Emeritus at the Royal College of Art in London. In 2013 he was elected as a Royal Academician by the Royal Academy of Art in London.

 

Arad has won numerous additional international awards, holds an Honorary Doctorate at Tel Aviv University, and is regularly and widely published. His work features in dozens of prestigious public collections and has been widely exhibited in record-setting shows, including at the MoMA (NYC), the V&A (London) and the Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris). Arad has collaborated with numerous international furniture, design, and luxury brands. His public art works have been adorning public spaces in London, Tokyo, Seoul, Milan, Toronto, Tel Aviv and Singapore.

 

Architecture

Under his direction, the architectural side of the practice has completed award winning projects such as the Maserati Showroom in Modena, Italy (2002), Yohji Yamamoto Flagship Store in Tokyo (2003), the Design Museum Holon in Israel (2010) and the Mediacite retail centre in Liege, Belgium. The practice is currently overseeing the construction of a 160,000 m² office development in Tel-Aviv, and a new Cancer Hospital in the north of Israel due to be completed in 2021. Ron Arad Architects have also designed the UK Holocaust Memorial, as part of the team responsible for the prestigious, recently-won UK National Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre project, due for completion in 2022.

 

In 2017, Arad won the competition to design the UK Holocaust Memorial as Memorial Architects, and part of a team led by Ghanaian British architect David Adjaye with Gustafson, Porter + Bowman landscape architects.