Louisville Stoneware taps world-renowned architect to expand brand
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Traditional dinnerware at Louisville Stoneware is still a top seller, but the company has recently put its focus on expanding its style and offerings in order to ensure success in the future.
The nearly 200-year-old company recently announced the addition of a creative director to the corporate team. Owner of Louisville Stoneware Steven Smith tapped world-renowned architect Kulapat Yantrasast for the job.
"Talking to Steve on the vision and process, we were just so excited to bring contemporary lifestyle--not just design but lifestyle--to [Louisville] Stoneware," said Yantrasast.
Yantrasast got his first taste of Kentucky in 2009, when he was chosen to design the expansion of the Speed Art Museum at the University of Louisville.
Six years later, the museum is nearing completion and Yantrasast isn't ready to leave.
"It's always sad when you finish a building. You work on a project for five or six years with a team," he said. "It's like having a baby and someone adopted it...it's good to have another baby."
The nearly 200-year-old company has consciously added more contemporary design to its line in the last few years, hoping to attract a younger, more diverse clientele.
Lisa Masters with Louisville Stoneware said the partnership will not only bring a contemporary vision to the traditional company, but help them expand into building materials and large-scale commercial projects.
"He will be helping us with creative projects that will involve the architecture of structures and spaces that are not just your average kitchen," said Masters.
Already, Yantrasast has secured several commercial projects across the country -- including tile work at an office building in California.
"It could be a win-win," said Yantrasast. "I could bring some fresh eyes to the thinking. At the same time, I can learn so much from the philosophy and technique and expertise that this team of people has."
Yantrasast said the Speed Art Museum will also feature tile from Louisville Stoneware when it opens in 2016.
Yantrasast's role as creative director is a commissioned gig, and he will continue to work as a full time architect with his company wHY Design.
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