TOTO
by Hayon

This whole project is about a search for simplicity in form, but sophistication in function, it brings together the 2 sides of my design work where on one hand I can be decorative and extremely visual but on the other I want to create something so streamlined in form that it becomes a classic line that lasts and continues

-Jaime Hayon

ABOUT the DESIGNER

Hayon’s work has straddled the design and art worlds in the last decade or so in a dazzling display of virtuoso technique paired with a singular vision. His exuberant, joyful style is always harnessed to a deep respect for craft and an instinctive appreciation for materiality. Highly prolific, Hayon has worked with an incredible array of the world’s finest producers of ceramics, glass, marble, wood, and many more to create decorative items, furniture and lighting. His stunning interiors grace both hotels and museums with spaces that reflect the elegant, expansive cosmos of Hayon‘s world. A true hybrid of artist and designer, he sees his art career as an opportunity to play and experiment with no commercial restrictions but brings that same artistic vision to his design work. True collaboration is something he feels passionately about, believing that he should not impose himself upon the company but instead create a new visual dialogue that uses the company’s expertise and traditions but interprets them in his unique style.
 

TOTO with their world standard of excellence had been on Hayon’s radar for a long time, their precisely engineered, state of the art systems represented a new kind of technical challenge for Hayon, one that he responded to with a search for simplicity and purity of form.

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TOTO by HAYON

“This whole project is about a search for simplicity in form, but sophistication in function, it brings together the 2 sides of my design work where on one hand I can be decorative and extremely visual but on the other I want to create something so streamlined in form that it becomes a classic line that lasts and continues. Toto is a company that is the best in the world when it comes to the technology and systems that make bathrooms work , they have very sophisticated techniques that internally make things function so knowing that level of expertise would be underlying the collection the challenge for me was the search for a pure and simple exterior and shapes that would be adaptable to any kind of interior.

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The inspiration really comes from the human body, sometimes the obvious thing to consider turns out to be the right place to look, especially when you are designing something so inexorably intertwined with bodily function. I thought about the curves of the human form, of the lack of harsh angles in our bodies and decided that every element had to reflect the human body in a way. Another important concept of these designs is the idea of ‘empty and full ‘ the fullness version contains and reflects the form, the emptiness version focuses on the taps and pipes and strips it back to focus on the functional elements, one way represents the full bodied piece and the other is the pared back skeleton.

 

This is a supremely technical kind of design as function is everything, so things like taps I concentrated on how it would feel in your hand, the ease of motion, the rounded shapes the tactile quality was important, there are things we did technically that I am very pleased with, for example the 360 degree movement on one piece, the way that the shower head extends to reach a minimal depth , there are lot of technical things that were a first for me, as in the past I have designed more accessory pieces rather than the functional elements.

The sinks are created with a signature shape, there is a half circle that holds another one with a curved lip that extends where they meet, if you took an aerial point of view across the various pieces you would see this recurring circular motif, the one circle enclosing another. The taps have this almost helicopter like part on top, the cross section grip has been used for a long time but we pushed for a smoother, softer edge as at the same time I wanted things to feel familiar rather than novel. We also challenged Toto with our desire for a different kind of color palette than they had used before and new finishes. For the toilets the curve was essential, you can find it too, in many of my signature furniture designs, if you look at the Ro chair for example, you will see that same curve incorporated into it. It’s very sensual in a way but also highly functional. The elegant shower head was another challenge we set for Toto to make it the thinnest in the industry if possible ,so they extended the length to gain the angle needed for this absolutely minimalist height. The push button flush is another element that Toto makes with such precision that it goes almost unnoticed on the wall, very spare, very small but it operates an internal flushing system that is quite unique, it’s really clever and supremely efficient.

So to sum up this project: It represents the marriage of supreme technical precision with a smooth, sensual design, introducing the elements that are personal to me, adding in colors and curves but to bring them in such a way that would create a timeless , elegant collection that would look as good in a residential project as it would in a large scale contract one, it’s truly universal and international in outlook and design. A collection that sustains it’s initial appeal over many years is important to me . The empty and full concept adapts to whatever place or materials you choose to set it in or with. The collaboration for me is also important on a broader scale as I have moved towards large scale contract projects it’s essential that I also work with objects that are easier to produce and more accessible in that regard so all the technicalchallenges are worthwhile for the long term aim of aclassic collection.”

Jaime Hayon,

December 2018

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“If you took an aerial point of view across the various pieces you would see this recurring circular motif, the one circle enclosing another. “