Meet Lebanese design collective The Greatest Design Disaster

The Greatest Design Disaster is led by Gregory Gatserelia and Joy Herro

A collision of forces has given birth to a new project called The Great Design Disaster. Led by a passionate duo – interior architect Gregory Gatserelia and design enthusiast Joy Herro – its aim is nothing short of shaking up the traditional boundaries of the contemporary design market. identity catches up with Herro to learn more.

What is the concept behind The Great Design Disaster? We give collectors the chance to step out of the commercial role and, instead, slip into the role of the initiator. In a figurative sense, we transform them into designers or artists. The Great Design Disaster (TGDD) challenges individuals with one question: “You, who can buy great design, can you create one?”

How did the idea come about and what is it created in response to? It began with the simple consideration of the collectible design experience: instead of the voyeuristic act in which artists and artisans show off their creations and collectors passively buy, we are introducing a market based on desires, dreams and creativity. [We are] matching collectors with artisans to create completely original custom design pieces. The pieces created from this process have an individual soul and are the result of the visions and actions of all three players – the collector, TGDD agents and the artisan.

How do yourself and Gregory Gatserelia balance your roles? The sensibility of Gregory toward his clients’ wishes and visions, as well as his ability to build trustworthy relationships with collectors as an art and design consultant, is an essential asset to The Great Design Disaster.

My numerous connections with talented artisans and deep insights into all things related to tailor-made production, as well as business-related skills, were the route to TGDD’s approach. To sum up, he is the creative arm and I am the executive one.

How will TGDD contribute to the contemporary design market? Our world is full of objects that give us ephemeral satisfaction, but modern consumption habits leave us hungry. TGDD introduces a market based on individual desires instead of the traditional structure of supply and demand.

And how will you respond to demand? Why create a million copies of a great design when we can foster the creation of a million great designs, each one a singular vision for the collector who commissions it?

Why was it important for you to go back to an artisanal approach and manner of creating design? The craftsman makes the collector’s dream come true! The collector will be more aware of the value of the hand-made, by literally seeing his creature grow and take shape. It is a very engaging and exciting experience for both [parties].

How does TGDD respond to areas such as luxury and sustainability? TGDD is sustainable. We don’t sell products and we don’t have warehouses; instead, we are agents of creation. The market is saturated, and waste and pollution have reached alarming proportions, so our mission is to invite people to re-evaluate who they are and what they really need. The result will be an expression of themselves.

TGDD is also luxury. Our collectors are like the pharaohs and emperors who commissioned unique works to artists and artisans throughout history.

How important is experimentation? I would rather say it is an emotional experience. A TGDD collector waits for his or her piece as a mother waits for her child to be born after all the efforts and the imagination.

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