Industrial Design

When he was younger, Marc Newson loved moulding plasticine and watching carpenters at work. He's never lost his passion for every aspect of design. By Jessica Moore
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The Independent Online


Conran is possibly the most well-known name in contemporary British design. Sir Terence's interests encompass aesthetics from furniture to food. He founded Habitat in the 1960s, making his mark as a leader in chic, affordable style. He has since gone from strength to strength, with a chain of top-class restaurants and the Conran Design Group amongst his many achievements. His fashion-designer son Jasper proves that appreciation of quality design runs in the family.

Conran makes it his aim to promote new talent and ideas in interior and industrial design. Every year, Sir Terence Conran chooses a guest curator to spend £30,000 on "things you'd like to live with" to be exhibited at the Design Museum, London. These items become part of the Conran Foundation Collection, which conserves and records the cream of 20th and 21st-century design.

This year, Sir Terence Conran has chosen industrial designer Marc Newson to work on the project. Newson's playful futuristic style has transformed funky bars, a trans-Atlantic jet and Ford cars. With Newson's eye for style, this year's exhibition promises to be nothing if not unusual. His fantasy shopping list includes a cosmonaut's space suit; a hand-made balsa-wood surfboard; a bottle opener; aviator sunglasses; caribiners for mountain climbing, and a clock.

Born in Sydney, Marc Newson, 37, set up design studios in Tokyo and Paris before settling in London five years ago. One of the most successful industrial designers of his generation, he has worked with an impressive list of clients, including Nike and Tefal. Like his work, Marc's collection of objects is influenced by his curious obsession with space travel, extreme sports, Fifties and Sixties Italian design and Stanley Kubrick's movies. Oh yes, it will be unusual!

Industrial Design Study Options

If you're interested in industrial design, it's useful to consider the topic area. Courses in similar subjects, such as 3D design, ceramics or interior design may also be worth investigating. For full course details, see www.ucas.co.uk

Here's the Which Course guide to selected industrial design courses:

Brunel University

Industrial design BA, 3 years/ 4 years sandwich

Standard entry requirements: a portfolio of design work plus 240 points including 2 A2/VCE 6-unit level or CCC A level, including design and technology or CCCCC Scottish Highers

Contact: www.brunel.ac.uk


UCE Birmingham

Industrial Design BA, 3 years

Standard entry requirements: a portfolio of design work plus 18 A-level points or equivalent.

Contact: www.biad.uce.ac.uk


University of Central Lancashire

Industrial design BA, 3 years

Standard entry requirements: a portfolio of design work plus 240 points including art and design or technology at A2.

Contact: www.uclan.ac.uk or 01772 893310


Robert Gordon University

Design for industry BSc, 4 years sandwich

Standard entry requirements: a portfolio of design work plus five Scottish Highers including BBB or BBCC or BB at A levels with at least B in art and design, craft and design or graphic communication and at least B in physics, maths or technological studies and a pass in English. A European language is an advantage.


Sheffield Hallam University

Industrial design with product or innovation, BA 3 years

Standard entry requirements: a portfolio of design work plus 200 points from at least 2 A levels or 4 Scottish Highers, including art and design.

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