Name: Pouria Savadkouei
Scholarship: #1 - Industrial Design
School: Art Center College of Design
Area of Study: Transportation Design
Pouria was born in Tehran, Iran, and for as long as he can remember, he’s always wanted to be a car designer. Now living in Pasadena, CA, and attending the Art Center College of Design, Pouria’s passion has fueled him to pursue a career in the world of automotive design. He tries to take a step toward realizing his childhood dream every day, one sketch at a time.
“His portfolio shows a connection to his own personal design language. There is a mature continuity of shape and form that establishes his unique perspective while finding a home with each brand project. Always impressed when a young designer has a recognizable personal style. Many can be trained to draw well and to comply with the industry neatly—to fit into a cubicle and become a cog in the machine. Few can go through the training without losing their personal, unique way of seeing and shaping the world.”
- ICON 4x4's Jonathan Ward on choosing Pouria as the recipient.
Who or what brought you to design?
Pouria Savadkouei: Art and design have been a huge part of my character since I was old enough to walk. The first car I consciously remember recognizing was my dad's orange Renault 5, and it was the first car I fell in love with. It had a ton of character. My artistic tendencies and my love for cars have combined to bring me towards design. The unwavering support of my parents has been a key factor in me being able to pursue my goals.
Where do you turn for inspiration?
PS: Design inspiration is everywhere. I don't find it difficult to get inspired to create. For example, different forms, surface transitions, and interactions can be found within flowers. Various origami shapes can be observed in stones, and perfect organic volumes exist in the bodies of animals. Our environment and nature provide plenty of ideas for us to be inspired by for eternity.
What’s your [design] aesthetic? What does it take to move you?
PS: My excitement is stimulated with a variety of different aesthetics. Whether it's flowing, classically beautiful organic forms, or completely groundbreaking, unconventional, and refreshing design solutions, I'm often in awe of cool designs. Designs that defy the status quo and bring refreshing ideas to the table. Whether it's in auto design, industrial design, or even in the world of entertainment, well-executed designs always catch my attention, no matter how subtle they are. But the aesthetic that I identify the most with as a creator has to be pure, uncomplicated, geometric designs that embody the idea that 'form follows function'.
What do you do to get outside of your craft? Something completely divorced from your work.
PS: I like to follow certain professional sports, but mostly I love to be active and activate my senses. I love to play sports, enjoy nature, experience new cultures, and of course, I love a healthy source of adrenaline! I especially love driving. I take any chance I get to take a scenic drive to a canyon road. And I love racing go-karts on occasion. Lastly, a day trip to Six Flags is one of my favorite past times.
Who is your favorite designer? Why?
PS: My favorite designer in the world of automotive design is Bruno Sacco. He represents a golden era of Mercedes design to me. But also, of course, Marcello Gandini has to be near the top of any auto enthusiast's list of designers, and that's certainly the case for me, too. And within industrial design, I really appreciate the work of Marc Newson.
What are your plans for when you finish school?
PS: I will be looking for a design studio that best matches my aspirations as a designer.
What do you want the design world to know about you?
PS: There is nothing I enjoy more than creating and refining modern design. But I also like to take any opportunity I get to insert a bit of old school personality into my creations. I'm as big of a gearhead and racing fan as any. When it comes to automotive design, I like to incorporate elements of those interests if the opportunity exists. Most importantly, I love to combine classic automotive aesthetics and mechanical feel with clean, simple, and completely new creative styling.
Where do you see the future of design headed?
PS: To me, the outlook on the future of design looks like products and product interactions are going to be more and more simplified and intuitive to cater to the needs of humans. And I believe that idea applies both aesthetically and functionally.