On attaining a degree in graphics and advertising, Bennie Matharu initially worked on a freelance basis, commissioning projects dedicated to corporate identity and product design. Bennie then decided to pursue a career in interior design, specializing in the Middle East market, where he worked on initiatives within private houses and palaces. A recent and notable design was a highly prestigious piece for the Jordanian Royal Family. Having worked for Bulthaup since it was first established in London in 1986, Bennie has designed many high-value projects for many high-profile clients. He looks to achieve an uncluttered kitchen environment. Clients' expectations are preeminent, seamlessly integrated into the designer's interpretation of Bulthaup's essence, based on the use of natural, pure materials.
Q&A with Bennie Matharu
Where do you find design inspiration?
It is all around us, if one is willing to observe their surroundings; architecture, colours, fashion in young people. That inspires a true feeling of design; this comes when the eye is trained.
How do you approach the design process?
It is easy if the designer listens to the client’s brief, rather than prepare a scheme which is self-motivated. More so, the answers to any design are inspired by the client: colours, finishes and materials normally reflect what the person is wearing.
How does your aesthetic stand out amongst other designers/architects?
Good design is copied over and over. Improvise by taking into consideration the whole room including, wall finishes, floor finishes and lighting. Lighting has become an important factor of any architectural room, which most designers do not consider in their thought process of presentation.
What is the greatest value you provide your client?
Design that is appealing in aesthetic as well as being practical to work in with the enjoyment of cooking with friends in an open space rather than in an isolated room. With my 30 years of experience in interior architecture and kitchen design, I have worked on many diverse projects of different scopes and backgrounds from which I have gained invaluable inspiration and knowledge.
What is your biggest challenge as a designer/architect?
Translation of a design proposal into a client’s dream that they feel truly happy with. To convert a blank piece of canvas into a design that inspires through color and reflects an individual’s personality, as well as harmonizes with the architectural space.
Where do you see kitchen design going in the next 5 years?
The current trend of the open plan living space will continue for a few years. The social aspect of cooking will remain but what may change is a sort of divide between dining and cooking, visually or physically.