President and creative director, David Stark Design and Production, New York, 42 Claim to fame:
Clients such as Target, the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, and the New York City Opera request his colorful, larger-than-life installations, which combine an artistic sensibility with strong brand marketing. Stark has built a reputation for using recycled materials and items that can be repurposed. “I want things to become icons, to have a life beyond the short-term nature of events.” Career highlight:
Creating large sculptures made of $1 million of donated office supplies, clothing, and food for the 2008 Robin Hood Foundation benefit. Design philosophy:
“We are all about invention. I don’t want people saying, ‘There’s David Stark doing that thing again.’ We bow to clients who are collaborators and can embrace a little wackiness and risk-taking.” Favorite place to get inspired:
The hardware store.
Photo: Dan Hallman for BizBash