I see myself as an artist who creates for industry, always rediscovering the form and function of the products that surround us. My clients come to me for inspiration, great design, and a touch of magic. I work most successfully with manufacturers collaborating with marketing and engineering to create best selling brands that function in a variety of environments - home, office, education, hospitality, and healthcare.
Lisa Smith is an industrial designer and a principal of Lisa Smith Studio, a New York based consultancy offering design services in the areas of furniture and housewares since 1991. We develop product lines from our own analysis of the marketplace as well as from a manufacturer’s design brief. Clients include Bonacina, Davis Furniture, Donghia, Fasem, Gunlocke, Haworth, HON Industries, Indiana Furniture, Levengers, Magppie, Nambé Mills, Nurture by Steelcase, OFS Brands, Rosenthal, Rogaska Crystal, Steelcase Wood, Steelforme and more.
Smith has lectured around the world on design for numerous educational and corporate sponsors. Smith holds several U.S. and international design and utility patents. Her work has been exhibited at MOMA, Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institute and The National Building Museum in Washington DC and published in numerous international magazines. Smith’s designs are sold in museum stores around the world including MOMA in New York City.
About the Design Process
Observation and research contribute importantly to developing a product idea. But equally important, and I believe often neglected, is employing the sensory intelligence in our eyes and hands. After the spark that generates an initial idea, my design process naturally begins with a pencil sketch. Then, however, I am quick to move to three-dimensional sketch models. I build an idea three-dimensionally so that I can analyze the form as I'm designing and developing it. In this way, I relate to the tradition of woman making handicrafts, only I'm creating products for mass production. Final production drawings are created in Solidworks CAD/CAM at the studio.
“I think Industrial Design is such a natural place for a woman. When I was in college, there were not many women entering the field. This has changed in the last few years, which is fortunate because women can make and have made important contributions to product and furniture design” states Smith, an alumnae and former professor in Pratt Institute's Industrial Design Department.
Honors and Awards
2011 - Featured in the New York Times, Copper Canyon, Nambe Mills
2009 - IDEA Juror, Featured in IDEA Magazine, Objeto Brasil
2006 - New York Times, Home Section, Crescent Shapes for a Crescent City
2004 - Exhibited in Six Decades of Diversity in Design, Pratt Institute, New York
2003 - Food and Wine Magazine 25th Anniversary Cover, Adagio Cakeplate,
2001 - Time Out Magazine Special Feature, Product Designers,
1999 - Interior and Sources Magazine, Sundance Stackable Chair
1998 - Good Design Award, Chicago Athenaeum, Wave Desk Accessories,
1997 - Best of NEOCON, Silver Award, Sine Tandem Seating, Steelcase
1996 - Good Design Award, Chicago Athenaeum, Convex Picture Frames,
1992 - Best of Competition, NEOCON and Gold Award for Seating
Chorus Stackable Chair for Gunlocke,
1990 - The National Building Museum, Washington DC, Mondo Materialis
1989 - ROSCOE and NEOCON Spec Award, Piping Series, Davis Furniture
1988 - ROSCOE and NEOCON Spec Award, Pinwheel Table, Les Prismatiques
US and International Patents
2014 US Utility Patent Seating Device with Ergonomic Armrests
2012 U.S. Utility Patent for Ampere Seating System
2004 European Union Design Patent for the Sundance Stackable Chair
2004 U.S. Utility Patent for the Application of Metal Foam in Cookware
2000 U.S. and European Design Patents for the Spiral Stackable Chair
1999 U.S. Design Patent for the Sundance Stackable Chair
1998 U.S. Design Patent for Sine Seating for Nurture by Steelcase
1995 U.S. Design Patent for the Convex Picture Frames, Nambé Mills
1994 U.S. Design Patent for the Chorus Stackable Chair, Gunlocke
Industrial Designers Society of America (www.IDSA.org)
Member 1988 to Present
2002 – 2008 - IDSA EcoDesign Section, Co-Chair 2000 -- 2006 - Board of Directors, O2NYC.org
1996 – 2002 - IDSA, Furniture Section Chair
1992 – 1994 - IDSA NYC Chapter Chair
1990 – 1992 - IDSA NYC Chapter Vice-Chair
Pratt Institute - Bachelor of Industrial Design, Cum Laude - 1977
1992 – 1994- Adjunct Professor, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY
Junior Product Design Class
Rowena Reed Kostellow Fund, Pratt Institute
2000 – Present
The Rowena Reed Kostellow Fund was established at Pratt Institute in 1988 to celebrate and communicate the philosophy and expression of one of the most recognized design educators of the 20th century. Rowena was both teacher and student her entire career. She fostered a dialogue with her students that continued long after their formal education. The Fund’s mission is to continue that dialogue and introduce her ideas to designers not fortunate enough to have had her as their professor, or to have been exposed to her continued teachings in the Industrial Design program at Pratt Institiute. Miss Reed believed that, for designers, beauty and the thoughtful manipulation of form are at the core of their role in the development of products, images or architectural form and space. The Rowena Fund continues Ms. Reed’s teachings through scholarships, publishing and programs. The Fund is governed by a board and an inclusive committee of supporters.