Designing for Work: A conversation with Barber & Osgerby

swissnex San Francisco and Vitra welcome design duo Barber & Osgerby to their first presentation in the Bay Area, celebrating the arrival of their Pacific Chair.

Event Details


swissnex San Francisco
Pier 17, Suite 800, San Francisco, California 94111 United States


June 16, 2017 from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm America/Los Angeles (UTC-07:00)


Our work and our workplaces are rapidly changing. Technology is ubiquitous, and products and markets are exponentially evolving. Machines are becoming smarter, faster; humans slowly become more creative, more mobile, more nimble. Teams contract and expand, and and so do spaces. Home is the new office, the office is the new home, and everything becomes virtual.

How do you design for that?

swissnex San Francisco and Vitra are inviting the design duo Barber & Osgerby to find out, through the lens of a humble yet quintessential workplace object.

The acclaimed London-based Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby recently designed their first office chair: the Pacific Chair, developed by and for Vitra in Switzerland. Drawing on this collaboration, the talk will explore the design process, challenges, and opportunities of designing for work. Where do you find inspiration and feedback? What is the role of creativity and technology? From research and development to high-end manufacturing, how do designers respond to an ever-changing and ever-scaling world? Welcome Barber and Osgerby for their first presentation in the Bay Area.


7pm: open doors, drinks
7:30 – 8:30pm: intro, welcome by swissnex, Vitra, talk BarberOsgerby + q&a
8:30 – 10pm: food, dj & networking


Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby

barber and osgerby

Edward Barber, born in Shrewsbury in 1969, and Jay Osgerby, born in Oxford in 1969, studied architecture and interior design as fellow students at the Royal College of Art in London. In 1996, they founded their own studio for design and architecture under the name Barber & Osgerby.

Since that time, their collaborative work has probed the interface between industrial design, furniture design and architecture. They are both Royal Designers for Industry (RDI) and are past recipients of the Jerwood Applied Arts prize. Both are Honorary Doctors of Arts, and Osgerby is an Honorary Fellow of Ravensbourne. The pair have lectured internationally and their work is held in permanent collections around the world including the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; London’s Design Museum; and the Art Institute of Chicago. (Photo: Jessica Klingelfuss).