Intelligent, passionate, stylish and dedicated. Today, we get to know more about Mahsa Gholizadeh. She is the brain behind Design by Mahsa, a global Interior Design powerhouse specializing in F&B, Hospitality, Retail and Commercial projects.
Can you please tell us about yourself, and about your days growing up?
I grew up in Tehran, surrounded by art and artists. My earliest influence for my design direction was a combination of culture, traditional elements and the modernity of space. I started as a surrealist painter, as a creativity exercise of putting into new realities the day to day life. From surrealism to design interiors was just a natural step.
Your passion for Interior Design, and having an eye for detail and style. How did it all start for you?
The spaces we live in heavily influence the life we lead. The environment we conduct our business is the backdrop for the day to day life. I became passionate about creating beautiful interiors from an early age, having traveled halfway across the world to Australia and witnessed that despite distances, humans are connected by similarities: their lives go on in spaces and it was my mission to make those spaces beautiful.
Can you please share your experiences about studying and working in different countries around the world, and what difference these experiences have made to your life?
Expat life is a great journey to enrich your experience and broaden your horizons. Studying in Australia, working in Dubai, interacting with London’s art scene and choosing Italian furniture elements at fairs in Milan not only defined my journey as a designer, but it is part of a lifestyle. Designers are nomads at heart and they find their inspiration in moving around the world.
What inspired you to start Design by Mahsa, and how has the entrepreneurial journey been so far?
I started the design studio a few years back. It was a natural consequence of evolving in my career. Having worked before on exceptional projects together with exceptional people, I wanted to make a mark and leave a legacy that belonged to my design vision.
Entrepreneurship is an exciting adventure, everyday new challenges and opportunities, everyday meeting inspiring people. Being a studio owner is a dynamic lifestyle that feeds my internal need of constant change and excitement.
Design by Mahsa is based in Dubai, but you deliver projects for clients all around the world. How were you able to grow a big client base within a short time, especially with well-established companies?
Network is very important but the main element is delivering great work. It wasn’t an effort strategized and sustained, it was a natural flow of putting creative ideas and designs out there and getting the response from the world. I love working on unique projects, that helps me deliver my best creative work. Word of mouth has been instrumental, as making people happy with their spaces automatically leads to that happiness to spread.
How do you think COVID-19 will affect the Interior Design/ Architecture industry going forward?
I think we will see changes in the way people approach their spaces. With working from home becoming a necessity people will spend more time in their own houses and automatically the need of creating a residential space that replicates the dynamism of a normal life is absolutely needed.
As for offices, F&B sector and hotels, we will see changes in the design requirements by adding mandatory distance elements. This will influence heavily the way spaces will look like, as social distancing is here to stay for at least a few years from now on.
Your designs are different and very unique. Can you please tell us what accounts for that?
The inspiration is in the uniqueness of the project: I always try to envision the lives of those who will live or work or visit that space. From there I draw the lines by taking in account the feelings that space can create. Meeting your future audience halfway is key to a unique design.
Design by Mahsa is now a household name in the industry. What advice would you give to young ones who look up to you, and would want to be like you in future?
Be yourself, be courageous and be bold. Art is subjective, so many young designers will get discouraged by the potential critics and tend to play it safe by the rules. However, the real uniqueness lies in being bold and true to your vision. Find what is your design style, what resonates with your identity and start from there. The journey is not easy, but is rewarding.
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Photo Credit: Mahsa Gholizadeh & Design by Mahsa