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Thomas Lykke An architect’s eye

Products and services created without principle and purpose waste resources. So with a holistic view and respect for culture and the environment, OEO architects create necessary, functional items that last.
According to OEO founder Thomas Lykke: “There’s so much junk! We don’t need more crap! We need good stuff with meaningful purpose.”

Lykke leads OEO’s daily operations in this successful, top-floor, beamed-ceiling studio in Copenhagen’s South Free Port (Søndre Frihavn). They design everything from products to interior architecture.
Originally he was educated as a fashion designer and worked for several years of work in the fashion industry. But life’s path is rarely arrow straight. And when Tyler Brulée, founder of Wallpaper Magazine, searched for an interior design editor for his magazine, Lykke made the shortlist.

“When I asked Brulée why he wanted me for an interior design editor, he said ‘because you have an eye for it’. And I said ‘OK, I’ll give it a go’.”
The gap to leap from Wallpaper to the architectural world was rather narrow. Fashion and interior design experience enabled Thomas to apply skills from these areas into his daily work. He always relies on having an eye for seeing things in new, tantalizing ways.

“You must be able to see the big picture. Not just single items. In fashion, you work with collections. We work with interiors with a more coherent view and put everything into a context.
“It’s not about your education. It’s about your eye. Being able to look at things with new eyes. Peel away the layers. Digest, internalize. And then translate it into *something new.”
“It’s not about your education. It’s about your eye. Being able to look at things with new eyes. A piece could have a great shape but awful color or be in amazing fabric but have poor design. You must see beyond that. Peel away the layers. Digest, internalize. And then translate it into something new. Just like sampling music, you can sample impressions and designs and develop a crossover workflow that you put your signature on in the end.”

OEO has had the same mantra since its launch: Find a reason for being. Everything must have a purpose. As designers and architects, we have enormous responsibility.
“We create things for the future,” said Lykke. Already in school (20 years ago), I focused on sustainability, and I was so frustrated when I was told to design for a short life. I don’t want to put blood, sweat, and tears into something that doesn’t last long. It’s about being a good human being – about being good to Mother Nature.”

OEO Studio’s philosophy, unique eye, and work to create sustainable, lasting beauty led to an international reputation (they does a lot of work in Japan). One example is the first Noma outpost, Inua, in Tokyo that OEO Studio designed in collaboration head chef Thomas Frebel. They’ve also worked with very old, traditional family companies in the 16th generation, which date to the early 1600s. Thomas explains:
“Japan has inspired us since our launch. Strong ties exist between Japan and Scandinavia. We share the same aesthetic perspectives, and the subsequent crossover creates stunning results. We have enormous respect for Japan’s history – yet we can open new doors there, and that’s probably why we still have this strong connection and works a lot with Japan.”

We agree that since the NN07 heritage and inspiration source solidifies our assertions about the connection between Japan and Scandinavia and the importance of long-lasting, meaningful items.

Thomas Lykke — An architect’s eye

Products and services created without principle and
purpose waste resources. So with a holistic view and respect
for culture and the environment, OEO Studio create
necessary, functional items that last.
According to OEO Studio founder Thomas Lykke: “There’s so much junk! We don’t need more crap! We need good stuff with meaningful purpose.”

Lykke leads OEO Studio’s daily operations in this successful, top-floor, beamed-ceiling studio in Copenhagen’s South Free Port (Søndre Frihavn). They design everything from products to interior architecture.
Originally he was educated as a fashion designer and worked for several years of work in the fashion industry. But life’s path is rarely arrow straight. And when Tyler Brulée, founder of Wallpaper Magazine, searched for an interior design editor for his magazine, Lykke made the shortlist.

“When I asked Brulée why he wanted me for an interior design editor, he said ‘because you have an eye for it’. And I said ‘OK, I’ll give it a go’.”

The gap to leap from Wallpaper to the architectural world was rather narrow. Fashion and interior design experience enabled Thomas to apply skills from these areas into his daily work. He always relies on having an eye for seeing things in new, tantalizing ways.
“You must be able to see the big picture. Not just single items. In fashion, you work with collections. We work with interiors with a more coherent view and put everything into a context.

“It’s not about your education. It’s about your eye. Being able to look at things with new eyes. A piece could have a great shape but awful color or be in amazing fabric but have poor design. You must see beyond that. Peel away the layers. Digest, internalize. And then translate it into something new. Just like sampling music, you can sample impressions and designs and develop a crossover workflow that you put your signature on in the end.”

OEO Studio has had the same mantra since its launch: Find a reason for being. Everything must have a purpose. As designers and architects, we have enormous responsibility.

“We create things for the future,” said Lykke. Already in school (20 years ago), I focused on sustainability, and I was so frustrated when I was told to design for a short life. I don’t want to put blood, sweat, and tears into something that doesn’t last long. It’s about being a good human being – about being good to Mother Nature.”
“It’s not about your education. It’s about your eye. Being able to look at things with new eyes. Peel away the layers. Digest, internalize. And then translate it into *something new.”
OEO Studio’s philosophy, unique eye, and work to create sustainable, lasting beauty led to an international reputation (they does a lot of work in Japan). One example is the first Noma outpost, Inua, in Tokyo that OEO Studio designed in collaboration head chef Thomas Frebel. They’ve also worked with very old, traditional family companies in the 16th generation, which date to the early 1600s. Thomas explains:

“Japan has inspired us since our launch. Strong ties exist between Japan and Scandinavia. We share the same aesthetic perspectives, and the subsequent crossover creates stunning results. We have enormous respect for Japan’s history – yet we can open new doors there, and that’s probably why we still have this strong connection and works a lot with Japan.”

We agree that since the NN07 heritage and inspiration source solidifies our assertions about the connection between Japan and Scandinavia and the importance of long-lasting, meaningful items.
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