James Irvine

James Irvine 1958-2013

An incredible designer and a very dear friend of Phaidon died in Milan in the early hours of this morning

More sad news from the creative world has just reached Phaidon with the news that designer James Irvine died in the very early hours of this morning in the Milan hospital Fatebenefratelli. James is remembered with special fondness here at Phaidon. Among other things he designed our incredibly well received stand at the Frankfurt Book Fair for a number of years. Every year it was generally regarded, even by rivals, as the best stand at the fair.

Irvine graduated in 1984 from the Royal College of Art. The same year he moved to Milan, Italy. Between 1984 and 1992 he was design consultant for Olivetti design studio in Milan, designing industrial products under the direction of Michele De Lucchi and Ettore Sottsass. In 1987 he worked for one year at the Toshiba Design Centre in Tokyo, returning to Milan in 1988 and opening his first studio. His first clients were Cappellini and SCP.

In 2000 he completed the design of the new city bus of the Hanover transport system Ustra. In total, 131 buses were built by Mercedes Benz. From 2005-2007 he was professor for industrial design at the Hochshule fur Gestaltung Karisruhe. In 2007 he was awarded an honorary Doctorate in Design from Kingston University. He had worked with various internationally renowned companies including Artemide, B&B Italia, Canon, Foscarini Magis, MDF Italia, Muji, Olivetti. Thonet and, of course, Phaidon.


Phaidon's stand at the Frankfurt Book Fair - designed by James Irvine
Phaidon's stand at the Frankfurt Book Fair - designed by James Irvine