Barbara Stauffacher Solomon on design

“Armin [Hofmann] taught us to always make clear solutions. ‘Learn the rules’, he said. ‘Follow them. Later, if you are brilliant enough, you can break them.’ In Switzerland, you weren’t supposed to be original. You were supposed to learn. At the Kunstgewerbeschule you would sit in rows in the classrooms, like a laboratory, doing your exercises. You would be working on a lower case ‘a’ for example, placing it on a grid, and Armin would walk by and without a word he would get you to stand up, and he’d sit down and white-out your sketch, correcting you to the absolute balance of that letter. Armin was there to teach us how to do it his way. And eventually you would learn how to do it Armin’s way…

To this day, the combination of being trained as a ballet dancer, and trained by a Swiss to be a designer: I think that’s why I haven’t fallen apart!”

— Barbara Stauffacher Solomon