After eight years as an account manager at the advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi, Mark Gabbertas was ready for a change. He set up his design studio in 1992 after completing cabinetmaking apprenticeships with the London workshop of Stemmer & Sharp Design and James Codrington Furniture in Somerset. From the beginning, Gabbertas’ objective was “to produce innovative and elegant designs that owe nothing to the vagaries of fashion.” He intends each piece “to stand the test of time and retain its freshness through an understanding of proportion, materials and production techniques.”
Soon Gabbertas’ work grew from projects for small private clients to large commercial organizations, including an outdoor public seating system for Tate Britain, a table collection for The Conran Shop, and outdoor pieces for Gloster. The Royal Festival Hall showcased Gabbertas’ work during the London Design Festival.
Gabbertas’ years in advertising helped shape his audience–driven approach to his craft. “The design of an object is heavily influenced by an appreciation of the commercial realities that surround it,” he says. “If a great–looking design does not sell, perhaps it is not such a great design.” His work, with its flowing, minimalist shapes, has all the elements of great design, and has garnered multiple awards from the Design Guild Mark, FX Design, Red Dot and others.