Volker's passion for lighting design began at a young age. He made his first lighting collection aged 10 while visiting family friends in the Czech Republic. Using their workshop he created a series of minimalist lights including a pair of bed lights and a ceiling light for his parents.
When I think back on those designs, they were pretty cool, quite minimalist. Interestingly what stayed through until today was having the light globe as a source that is not hidden - in most of our designs the globe is exposed and the light is designed around the globe.
Young Volker would spend his free time and pocket money searching for unusual lights. One day he came across a light which he thought was absolutely inventive and interesting. He later found out that the designer of that piece was the legendary German lighting designer Ingo Maurer. Volker would later meet Maurer at his studio on several occasions, and describes him as his hero and absolute guru.
I always buy lights from his studio so my house is a mix of his lights and my lights... I need more walls and ceilings - I'm running out!
Despite his early enthusiasm and natural talent, Volker took a detour on the way to his current practice.
I don't really know what happened. I was actually a hairdresser for nineteen years and I only quit about seven or eight years ago. Hairdressing was good but it never really fulfilled me.
Volker founded his studio almost a decade ago, and has since established himself as a leader in his field. Volker and his team work with a variety of new and recycled materials including brass, copper, porcelain and glass to create unique and surprising pieces.
He is inspired by the urban environment in his work, but also believes that nature is really important as a way to calm down and be rejuvenated and inspired in a different way.
MM: What is your favourite piece/collaboration of your collection?
VH: I would say the OMG at the National Gallery of Victoria in 2015. It was definitely a milestone and a really nice compliment, because it's my favourite light. It's three metres in diameter and it's made up of sixty disks and thirty globes. I like it so much because it's pretty crazy and it's nice to be able to use part-recycled materials to create something new and unusual. It's kind of brutal but beautiful which I think sort of sums me up.
MM: Where do you get the best coffee and food in Melbourne?
MM: Where is your favourite travel destination?
VH: I really like Byron Bay, which is not that far away. Of course I like New York and Berlin and London and all of those places, but Byron Bay I think I just love because it is always so beautiful and magical up there. I love going up there at least once a year, ideally twice a year to recover and relax. It ticks all my boxes.
MM: What are you hoping for 2018?
VH: I think besides good health and living a happy life, my main focus is my work and my team and I really hope that we can keep ticking boxes and achieving amazing goals together.