Regulars / The Graduates 2016

Kingston grad Harry Grundy’s design work has a highly conceptual bias


Emily Gosling

Kingston graduate Harry Grundy’s work boasts some very strong ideas, executed brilliantly and conceived with originality and flair. “I’ve wanted to be many things since I was a kid, starting with an inventor, then a car designer, then an architect,” says Harry. As it stands, I’m attempting to enjoy all possibilities under the blanket term, ‘designer’”. 


Tim Bowditch: Harry Grundy

Among his works is a smart and hilarious look at a golf course, transforming the sand bunkers – “the most commonly stressful part of the golf course” – into neat Zen gardens.

“I enjoy working naively. Rather than breaking the rules of a discipline, I try not to learn them in the first place. I like to see what I can get away with, whilehopefully entertaining people in the process,” he says. The work takes a highly conceptual bias, and elsewhere he’s come up with the brilliant idea of transforming a condom into a vase – “an object used to prevent life has been repurposed to incubate it.”

During his time at uni, Harry feels the most valuable thing he learned from his tutors was to “take silliness seriously, play, the industry is not your boss, print things out, make sense, make more, make technicians your friends, pester politely, find the universal truth, lie convincingly, be messy, be brave, be an opportunist, stay naive, stay bloody minded, try, ignore pastiche, put on a show, make furniture on a graphic design course, share ideas, do favours, scare yourself, work resourcefully, endure, enjoy yourself, make lists.”

He adds: “Like many art students, I was wrestling with a short attention span. With every new idea feeling like the most deserving of my time, I needed a way to produce work quickly. After talking with my tutor Kieran (whom I owe an awful lot to) we decided on a body of work exploring craft and experimentation. Often the outcomes would be vessels or seating furniture. With both objects having very simple functions, their form’s offer a lot to be tinkered with.” 

The young designer already has a D&AD New Blood Pencil under his belt, as well as internships at agencies including NB Studio, Magpie Studio, Johnson Banks, Hat-Trick and Interabang. He’s now been offered a role at NB, starting in August. “Their Creative Courage mantra and witty ideas made my decision a no-brainer,” he says.


Harry Grundy


Harry Grundy


Harry Grundy


Harry Grundy


Harry Grundy


Harry Grundy

G . F Smith

It’s Nice That’s Graduates 2016 is kindly supported by G . F Smith, whose gorgeous range of papers and services can be just the thing for new and soon-to-be creative grads. The 130-year-old paper company has a long history of working with designers and artists at all stages of their careers, with its high-quality and innovative paper products offering a huge range of creative possibilities.