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Tom Stepp had completed an impressive number of vocational training courses before graduating as an architect from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen. As a carpenter, building technician and construction technician he had useful knowledge about the forces at work in a construction. Nonetheless, he has deliberately opted not to construct his own models.
“I don’t want my limitations as a craftsman to determine what I can make. If I can’t plane a piece of wood, it shouldn’t stop me using planed wood,” he says.
His craftsman background has given him a pragmatic approach to furniture design.
“Good design? Something it doesn’t hurt to sit on!” he smiles.
Although he is one of the most widely acknowledged Danish designers, he is not keen on the term ‘furniture art’, and his ideas often come when he discovers a need in his own everyday life. He designed the Prime Time easy chair when his daughter was little. He needed a chair they could both sit in at the end of the day while she watched television and he took a ten-minute break.
“Prime Time appeals because it so clearly signals its underlying idea: “Come and relax in me!” it says. People get the message,” Stepp explains.