Porsche Design follows a clear design philosophy: optimize function. Reduce the form right down to the essentials. Overcome the familiar to continually discover new and exceptional solutions. The vision that inspired founder Professor Ferdinand Alexander Porsche to create the legendary Porsche 911 is built on the same principles that have driven Porsche Design since 1972.
SUPERIOR QUALITY AND EXTRAORDINARY DESIGN A SUCCESS STORY
The singularity of the Porsche Design brand can be traced back to the character and biography of its founder Ferdinand Alexander Porsche. Born on December 11, 1935, the eldest of four sons of Dorothea and Ferry Porsche spends much of his childhood in the Stuttgart design studio and workshops of his grandfather. In 1943 the family moves to Austria and Ferdinand Alexander Porsche attends school in Zell am See.
After the family returns to Stuttgart, Ferry Porsche forms the Porsche sports car company out of his father’s design studio. Ferdinand Alexander joins the family enterprise as a designer in 1958. His first great challenge was to design what would become the Porsche 911. The designer’s instinct for technology and materials, and most of all his purist aesthetic become ever more refined.
The early 1970s are a time of transition for the company. Porsche KG becomes a joint stock company under the name Porsche AG and the family withdraws from day-to-day operations. Ferdinand Alexander Porsche retains his seat on the Supervisory Board but the bylaws require him to relinquish his position as head designer. In 1972, driven by the need to create over the potential for profit, he founds Porsche Design in Stuttgart.
FROM CARS TO WATCHES
The Porsche company is among the first to commission a project: a new timepiece to recognize the service of its long-time employees. The automobile manufacturer commits to the purchase of 20 watches per year. Ferdinand Alexander and his small team otherwise spend their time developing what they like: timepieces and eyewear, pipes and typewriters – always with a new and interesting twist.
BACK TO ZELL AM SEE
UNCOMPROMISING QUALITY BUILT ON INDEPENDENCE
In 1974 the founder is drawn back to his roots and returns to his childhood home to build the Porsche Design Studio in Zell am See. Surrounded by family and the tranquil beauty of the Alps, he finds what he needs for his work. Ferdinand Porsche is not motivated by profit, nor does he wish to expand the business to take on more commissions. Instead he uses his financial independence to design products the way he sees fit, or not at all. This rigorous pursuit of superior quality and extraordinary design is apparent in every object created by the Porsche Design Studio.