Moment for Oneself

by Maciej Chmara | AUSTRIA

His project, Moment for Oneself, reinvents a perennial leisure activity (fishing) with a portable kit crafted in wood, combining all the necessary equipment: a stool, fishing rod, and individual ‘camping stove’. The piece takes a fresh look at an age-old pastime centred on solitary relaxation and the contemplation of the natural scene, increasingly misunderstood or ignored by younger generations.

Maciej Chmara

Polish-German designer Maciej Chmara (aged 29) met Ania Rosinke at the Gdansk Academy of Fine Arts, and the two have worked together in their design studio in Vienna, Austria, ever since. For Maciej, design is not only a question of ‘clean’ styling and production, but also a way of thinking more deeply about how we engage with the world around us.

The inspiration for your project?

The issue of sustainable development. When we think about ecology or sustainability in design, we still think in terms of the choice of materials, or energy consumption, when we should be looking at the root of the problem instead. My project should be seen as a symbol. Through it, I suggest we strive to rediscover moments of leisure and relaxation unconnected with the consumption of goods. Fishing is the perfect illustration of this. I’m part of that generation that still went fishing with its parents and grandparents – something children today tend not to do. I see fishing as a meditative activity, an ideal way to relax and understand nature. That’s how my portable wooden fishing kit came about. It combines all the necessary items – a bucket, a fishing rod, a stool and a camping stove, in a simple back-pack.

Being a designer today means…?

Having the good fortune to practice one of the most exciting professions around. But today’s designers have a difficult role: they need to know how to design objects that sell well, but they must also work within ethical constraints, and encourage their distributors to embrace better production techniques, using eco-friendly materials, for example, or simply by persuading them not to manufacture the waste of tomorrow.

‘Time to yourself’ in three words?

Escape, beauty, slowness.

Your own ‘me-time’?

I love getting out of town, to breathe fresh air, enjoy the peace and quiet of nature and find beauty in the shapes, smells and sounds all around us.

photos Marc Domage © Fondation d'entreprise Hermès, 2014