Jannis Zell is a restless creative. His work flits between disciplines and his portfolio includes graphic design projects, ceramics, product design and more. “I like searching for the fun and the unusual. I could not stick with one medium,” Jannis explains. A graduate of the University of Arts and Design in Karlsruhe, Germany, Jannis found his education offered the freedom to explore what interests him. “The school is pretty hippy and open in it’s nature,” says Jannis. “The students can pick their seminars theirselves. You have to learn to look out for what interests you. You start doing your own projects and collaborate a lot with students from different faculties.”
Notable projects include Buoy, a lamp inspired by emergency lights used when seafaring that will be exhibited at the Milan Salone next month and Sergio, a typeface inspired by “graffiti scratches you see on train windows and an elegant monoline.” Along with identities for the Ernst Schneider Prize 2016 and design collective Exoterica, a charming and bonkers film called Tombola that shows off his skills with clay and model making, and a host of collaborative projects including headwear brand Primitive Hut, it seems that Jannis will not be bored for long. “I’m always trying to create something fun or having fun when I’m doing it. Switching between disciplines. Staying fresh and doing things I have never done before.”
Janis will continue his adventures in design this year with a host of projects that will test his skills. “I once built an archetypical sculpture out of four rice waffles. I can imagine it to become a night table or a stool in the end. Now I’m trying to figure out a mode to reconstruct the structure in a bigger scale,” he says. “Next to that I am working on a new project with the Primitive Hut guys. It will be about gambling or mozzarella.” We can’t wait to see what emerges.