There aren’t many design studios that can claim a 125-year-old former lima bean factory as their headquarters, but for California-based Mattson Creative, it’s home. Featuring a huge corrugated metal exterior, the studio cuts an impressive silhouette – but inside there’s an even more unusual vibe.
“I’d call it mid-century modern meets vintage industrial,” says designer Ty Mattson, who counts Apple, DreamWorks and Billabong among his clients. “We have lots of exposed beams and woodwork, and lots of the original gears and contraptions that were used to process the lima beans are intact.”
Mattson’s office has a more modern feel. “My desk is a Room & Board dining room table (1), and I’ve got a pretty incredible bookshelf,” he says. “The George Nelson clock (2) on it is one of my favourites. It was a gift from a friend. I never had a wall that was worthy of it until now.”
Below the clock is his name badge (3) from when he worked at Disneyland as a student, while several Superman statues (4) adorn the shelves: “I’ve always been a fan. As a kid I’d constantly depict superheroes with magic markers.”
Artwork also features heavily, from an authorised reproduction of Milton Glaser’s Dylan poster (5) – “he was kind enough to sign it” – to prints that Mattson designed for TV series Lost (6) and Dexter (7). He smiles: “So much of my work is digital now. It’s nice to have some tangible evidence that I’ve made something real.”
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