The 5-Minute Interview: Peter Saville, Designer

'At 51, the difficult thing is feeling you're running out of time'
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The Independent Online

Peter Saville, 51, co-founded the record label Factory Records and is also curator of the Noise arts festival for young people. His submissions can be seen at the Noise Exhibition at Urbis in Manchester until 19 November and at www.noisefestival.com

If I weren't talking to you right now I'd be...

Having breakfast [it's midday] and getting to grips with today. I was still up at 4am.

A phrase I use far too often is...

Post-war socio-cultural democratisation. It's my rationale for everything.

People should take notice of...

Civilisation as a collective and progressive intelligence - too much has to be relearnt.

The most surprising thing that ever happened to me was...

Four weeks ago I found myself on a group show with Richard Hamilton [the English painter]. A piece by him I saw 30 years ago influenced me enormously. It wasn't until I saw the work again I saw it subconsciously and subliminally had a profound effect on me.

A misperception of me is...

That I'm a graphic designer.

I'm not a politician but...

The global issues we confront will need some kind of world governance. I'm not sure how the will to deal with global issues can be devolved around so many parties. And [I'd have] competence testing for the vote. I'm upset by the way that issues are dumbed down.

The ideal night out is...

Staying in. I had 25 years of going out, mainly just to eat. I like restaurants and cafes as places to eat rather than the lifestyle experience.

In moments of weakness I...

Sulk.

You know me as a designer, but in a truer life I'd have been a...

Diplomat... a safe version of James Bond.

The best age to be is...

I had a difficult time round about 30. I felt quite good about things at 40 - this month I was 51. The difficult thing is feeling that you're running out of time.

In a nutshell, my philosophy is:

To accept that conditions and circumstances around you are constantly changing.

Elisa Bray

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