From a young age, designer Bill Hilgendorf was fascinated by the way
things worked. Often dismantling objects, from small appliances to
bicycles, he had an innate desire to understand how and why they
worked, fixing and reconstructing these objects back into a whole,
functional object. Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, Hilgendorf
attended the Rhode Island School of Design, where he enrolled in
graphic design, but came to understand during his first year that
working in two dimensions was not going to satisfy him. He transferred
to the industrial program his sophomore year. During his junior year,
Hilgendorf took the opportunity to study abroad in Stockholm, Sweden
at the Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Design, where
he truly fell in love with furniture design and the Scandinavian
aesthetic while on a quest for his family’s Swedish roots. After
graduating from RISD, he worked for a furniture maker for a year
before co-founding the multi-disciplinary design studio Uhuru in
2004 with Jason Horvath, his fellow industrial design classmate at RISD.
Hilgendorf currently works out of Uhuru’s studio and lives with his
family in Red Hook, Brooklyn.
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