Ever since architect Emily Fischer founded Haptic Lab in 2009, she’s been wowing the design world with her unique “Soft-Maps” quilts (a great gift for new parents, the newly married, or dear old friends). Hear a little of what’s playing in her Brooklyn studio—also responsible for creative collaborations in architecture, art, furniture, and even kites—in our latest Playlist.
What do you listen to while you work? I spent years working in buttoned-up, quiet architectural offices in the city, so I definitely take advantage of having my own non-traditional working environment. The music is always loud when it’s playing in the studio, usually drowning out the din of DUMBO’s bridge traffic. When I need to focus on a specific sewing project, I listen to audiobooks downloaded via the New York Public Library. The NYPL has over 20,000 audiobooks available for download in MP3 format for free, and I average around 12 books a month. (Mostly classics like War and Peace, Proust, everything written by Dickens and Edith Wharton…and now I’m blacksliding into YA with the Hunger Games series.)
How do you listen? In the studio I have set of old speakers plugged into the laptop, or an iPod when I’m listening to an audiobook. When I work at home, the situation is analog. My boyfriend (writer Matt Lombardi) and I have a vinyl collection and a room full of instruments accrued through years of participating in Brooklyn’s DIY music scene. I’ve never been in a band, but Matt and his brother Jay (an artist and designer based in Philadelphia) are constantly making music. It’s so much fun to be around.
Do you have any favorite music websites/providers? I was an avid user of Muxtape, which sadly got curbed by the RIAA. I’ve been using 8tracks for the past few years as an alternative, which like Muxtape allows users to create mix tapes for their friends by uploading digital music they already own. It’s a wonderful online resource because individuals are authoring each mix to showcase their own discoveries.
Where do you find music recommendations? Who influences your musical taste? Matt makes me 8track mixes, and he has an encyclopedic knowledge of indie and garage rock, which I love. I have very intense work habits, so Matt’s mixes are usually themed (pointedly) on my obsessions: never sleeping, being broke, and WORK. They are amazing. [Hear three of his mixes here: Church of Work, Busted, and Sleep Tired Sleep Tired.]
Does music influence your work? On a recent large scale project, I listened to Bjork on repeat for months…when I listen to “Volta” now or look at the work I produced while listening to that particular album, the two things seem dependent on one another. I have a teenager’s obsessive love of music.
If your work was a song or a musician, what or who would it be? Animal Collective.
She Works Hard for the Money, Donna Summer
Never Get Ahead, Bobby Conn
We Gotta Get Out of This Place, The Animals
I Want Some, Make Up
Factory Girl, The Rolling Stones
Work Song, Dan Reeder
Welcome to the Working Week, Elvis Costello
Hold On, John Lennon
Images: Emily Fischer and portrait of Emily from PSFK interview here.