Everyone’s buzzing about David Kaihoi, but he would never say so.
A Minnesota native with ambition and tricks up his sleeve, David Kaihoi moved to New York to get his hands in on the studio art scene 16 years ago, now a lead designer as part of Miles Redd team and in his own right. Today, he sits between the green velvet walls of Miles Redd’s office, where exquisite busts mount the doorways and seemingly watch him work.
Speaking of busts in the office, Kaihoi says his biggest source of inspiration is fine art sculptures. “I’m always drawn to dimension. I have this tendency to want to create volumes…anything playing with that idea of dimensionality or abstract form.” Kaihoi’s eccentric, mixed-media work reflects this, even before he started working with Miles Redd.
Architectural Digest 2017 feature of the Miles Redd Team and Office. (From Left) Lauren Carras, Miles Redd, David Kaihoi and Blake Brunson
Kaihoi first met Redd when he was busy making and moving things. “For work, I installed art with an amazing company called ILevel. They handle art for galleries and private clients and also a smart list of NYC interior designers. One of them was Miles, who later offered me a job. I hadn’t seriously considered interior decorating, but it seemed like an interesting angle that satisfied so many curiosities.” David Kaihoi joined the Miles Redd team 11 years ago and his work has continued to ping across the design map.
(Left) Kaihoi’s living room (Right) Kaihoi’s entrance hallway. Featured in Elle Decor 2018 Spring Issue.
GDG asked David Kaihoi what he hopes to accomplish with his work.
“A unique perspective. A personal perspective on art and design and interior decorating. The ultimate goal for designers is to somehow manifest their ethereal tastes into tangible things.”
Kaihoi’s Fabric Line With Schumacher. (Left) Tic For Tac (Right) Tutsi
When imagining a new Patterson Flynn Martin rug collection, F. Schumacher & Co. President and CEO, Timur Yumusaklar already had Kaihoi’s unique perspective in mind. Together, they approached the designing process like a creative experiment.
When Kaihoi met with Yumusaklar, Kaihoi’s love for designing out of box and building with his hands was inspirited. “[Yumusaklar] He’s forward thinking and provocative where he tries to pull inspiration. He originally approached me; he recognizes I had more of a studio or fine art interest in the things I was making. He said ‘I don’t want to do a typical collection’, but he didn’t know what it was yet. It could be dipping carpets or new technology or playing around with the shape of the rug,” said Kaihoi.
Kaihoi’s PFM rugs (Left) XY Roseate (Right) Highly Decorated
Part of his handmade collection uses a mixture of wool and metal. GDG comments that some might find metal an atypical rug material. What did Kaihoi have to say?
Kaihoi laughs in agreement, recognizing the rare marriage of textiles: “The mix and match of materials…we do that in rooms all of the time, but not in a singular piece. I wanted to make something that was a little bit more of a question mark. Like design objects. Straight from the sheep, matched with the machine…a push-pull of elements from a love scene.”
David Kaihoi, part-time poet.
Kaihoi, a full-time, inclusive change-maker, breaks traditional design rules by provoking open-mindedness in how things can transform. When asked how he envisioned his PFM pieces to be executed in a space, he said: “It feels more like an object. It doesn’t have a place, but needs to be adopted into a scenario.”
GDG asked Kaihoi if he predicts any Interior trends on the horizon…he’s thinking the fashion floral obsession will linger. To hear more from this emerging talent, be sure to attend David Kaihoi and Adam Charlap Hyman’s Showroom Program in the Patterson Flynn Martin showroom at the DDB 2018 Fall Market on October 11th.
*Go Design Go Digital Editor Isabelle Harrington had the pleasure of working under David Kaihoi as a summer intern in 2017.