After spending half an hour with Henry Pilcher I can certainly conclude that he is a true visionary, calculated and methodical. He knows exactly what he wants and exactly how he is going to get there.
The thing that impresses me the most about Henry is his confidence, not only in the products he designs but also in himself and the career he has chosen. To be honest I seldom speak with or know of any man at the age of 26 who is so grounded. Whatever preconceptions you may have had about designers struggling to make their way from one project to the next are completely obliterated after a conversation with Henry.
On paper it could be argued that Henry has had a bit of a dream run. After a quick stint at Rhode Island School of Design to polish off his masters, he found himself working at FORM in Perth where he spent his spare time conceptualising designs from his passion for raw materials. During his time in Perth he built the prototype ‘Block 2’ light, a product that would later cause somewhat of frenzy in the design world. In 2010, the year of the light’s launch, Henry went on to win several Australian design awards earning himself a trip to Milan and worldwide exposure. This provided him with the connections to build his own personal brand and distribute his highly sought-after ‘Block 2’ design.
Come 2012, Henry has set up a seamless distribution network for his Block 2 light, selling an average of 15 a week ($1000 each) to customers all over the world. Despite his relatively rapid success he remains humble. Of course I then ask him the same question he gets bombarded with everyday, ‘What’s next?’ His answer is so perfect it frustrates me. Henry tells me he isn’t about to ruin the success of ‘Block 2’, the world is happy with his first furniture design, unbelievably happy; he’s looking to other avenues. He’s succeeded here and chasing the success of his first international hit is a fruitless endeavour, something he could potentially do for the rest of his life.
Henry’s new focus is his residential design and development company, The Quambi Group, and if you’re questioning his credentials, there’s no need, his Masters of Property Development will surely suffice. The Quambi Group offers sensible designs paired with innovative construction to deliver affordable homes with quality living standards – exactly what Australia needs. He plans to focus on the Quambi group for 10 years, build it to a point where it can run itself and then perhaps try his hand in automotive design.
TVG is about men with a myriad of interests and talents. For me, Henry was the ideal candidate. I’ve known Henry for years and I knew he was talented but to be honest we’d never really spoken about his work. When I got in the car after our interview I was impressed and maybe a little jealous, he really has set up a solid foundation for himself to become not only a truly versatile designer, but a formidable business man.