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Maximilian Michael Eicke: Designer With A Global Edge

Originally Posted: June 29, 2010


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Maximilian Michael Eicke admitted that this table, which is hand carved Java marble and reclaimed teak, is not only eco-friendly but one of the designer's personal favorites. The table is one of a limited edition of 10. It will be on view at the launch reception to be held on Saturday, July 17, in Sag Harbor. (Eileen Casey)

Sag Harbor - Maximilian Michael Eicke grew up in Sag Harbor, as well as London, Dusseldorf, New York and Dublin. This impressive 21-year-old artist and designer has focused his talent, skills and global insight with contrasts of form, angles, edges, and different materials to create both a dashing yet functional line of furniture.

Designer Maximilian Michael Eicke.

Eicke attended the International School in Dusseldorf up to fourth grade, relocated to Sag Harbor, and attended The Ross School, graduating in 2007. Eicke reveals "The Ross School gave me such a love for Art and Design that after completing my Senior Project I decided to continue studying Interior and Furniture Design through my college career." He attended Griffith College in Dublin, Ireland and graduated at the top of his class within two years to receive his Undergraduate degree in Interior Design.

Having spent a large portion of his life traveling Eicke reveals "I was able to learn about so many different cultures of the world at such a young age," and that experience and opportunity is reflected in the myriad of materials, as well as the design skills and influences Eicke has used in his first line of furniture design, created over the past year. Eicke is also fluent in German.

The furniture pieces are all limited editions, and a few have sold out already, prior to the offical launch opening to be held on Saturday, July 17, with a reception from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the historic Christy's Building at 3 Madison Street in Sag Harbor. The building is owned by his father, the well known and highly respected art and antiques dealer Michael Eicke.

One of the outdoor pieces of the collection. This slatted chaise is made out of Naturally Oil finished Teak with stainless steel accents.


Having done many internships and apprenticeships in design related fields throughout the world during both high school and college, Eicke amassed experience ranging from Architecture firm, metal, and interior design internships, including Polenz Metal Design Manufaktur, Luedinghausen, Germany; Michael Lee Collection: Interior Design Internship in Malibu and Los Angeles, CA; Enzenauer Architecturmanagement: Architecture Internship, Dusseldorf, Germany; Andy Toro Metal Workshop & Battle Iron and Bronze: Metal Apprenticeship, Sag Harbor, NY, and Stelle Architects: Architecture Internship, Bridgehampton, NY.

The "Mr. Chris" chair inspired by the fundamental ideas of the
de-style movement.

Among his numerous awards, Eicke has been recognized with Best Academic Achievement, 2009, Griffith College Dublin, Ireland, and was the representative for Griffith College at Dyson Creativity Day during Dublin Design Week in 2007.

With urging from his parents, Eicke has traveled extensively, including North and South America, Europe and Asia "gathering inspiration and knowledge from each of these places." Eicke states "Having experienced all this at my young age has helped shape my life in the way it has and has made me want to use my experience and apply it to my design."

Eicke founded Max ID NY LLC in September 2009. The company was established after completing his Undergraduate degree in Design in Ireland. The final inspiration that drove him to found the company was a Metal Apprenticeship that he had completed just weeks before. He returned to New York with the drive to want to create something special. He immediately decided to settle down and continue working on designing and producing prototypes, which he built out of his own workshop. When he completed his first catalog he presented 30 designs ranging from chairs to tables to lighting to fellow designers, artists, friends and critics, and the response was so positive it led him to seek out small-scale production.

The chair's name was dedicated to Chris Engel as a thank you. Engel was Eicke's mentor for his senior project while at the Ross School.

Further advice from people in the business as to where the best suited place to produce his furniture led him to Indonesia. "Their reputation for furniture is extraordinary, their love for the material and the quality of the craftsmanship is exemplary and their ability to create something extraordinary from so little is what especially attracted me to that area." Traveling to the islands of Bali and Java he was put in contact with several companies and toured around the different complexes. Amazed by what he saw he decided to stick with his gut and settle for production in Indonesia, thus choosing the company with the best reputation and best quality of craftsmanship and materials to suit his designs.

With the summer months fast approaching and much to still be done he immediately got to work with the company and arranged everything to launch his first furniture collection in July of 2010. Eicke is excited about taking this big leap from the conceptual to the showroom floor.

Eicke reflects on his career path by allowing "I have been around beautiful art and design all my life, mainly due to the fact that my father is an art dealer and collector and my mother is in fashion design. Because of their professional fields I have been fortunate enough to live in places all over the world and travel to places that one wouldn't usually see at such a young age."

One of the most intriguing pieces of the current collection - the "Elfenbein" chairs featured with a stool version act both as a functional chair as well as a sculptural object. Each color being sold in limited editions of 50 makes these pieces something to enjoy and collect.


He further elaborates, "When I was growing up and trying to figure out what my best path for a future career would be I always tried to find a field that could embody everything that I have been fortunate enough to grow up with. The most important factor was to be my own boss and that I would always be able to have the freedom to travel. Also, I wanted to follow in my parents footsteps, because they both built up their own businesses and were very successful at it."

Coming in two finishes - Ebonized Teak and Naturally oil
finished teak - The Bone Chair inlayed with polished stainless steel bits creates an adjustable chair which also functions as a table.

"When it came down to deciding a field of study I became interested in interior architecture and furniture design. After graduating from university in Ireland within two years I decided that furniture design and production were my dream. Instead of sitting around and waiting for something to come along I decided to take my life into my own hands. I started to produce my own prototypes of furniture that I had been designing. When the opportunity arose to go backpacking through Australia, Asia and Indonesia I decided it would be an amazing opportunity to see some extraordinary places, and at the same time be able to seek production companies for my furniture."

The collection is inspired by minimalistic design, and Eicke plays with simple shapes and colors to create an aesthetically pleasing and functional range of furniture. Ranging everywhere from indoor to outdoor seating and tables to lighting, this innovative, clever and beautiful line has something to appeal to all tastes.

Eicke continues "I was fortunate to have contacts in all the places I visited and was being introduced to the right people. As a direct result six months later I'm now setting up for my launch party under my own brand, Max ID NY, with a collection of pieces ranging from furniture to lighting. The line is called "MMX," and one of the main reasons I am doing this is that I want to show people that age does not matter when it comes to being successful and doing something that you love to do, plus I'm having the most fun that I could ever imagine. So what more could I ask for."

Indeed, what more could such a wunderkind ask for, however, there will be so much more to be had in the future of this remarkably gifted young man.

Designed as a present to his father Michael Eicke. "Mad Mike" is a two in one chair created by fiber-glassing a marine plywood subframe which has in turn been lacquered finished in two shades of gray.



For more information go to www.maxidny.com, or email at max@maxidny.com


Eileen Casey spent many years working in the television and music industries in New York City on the "ABC In Concert" weekly series, as well as several prime time network and cable television specials. An award-winning journalist, editor, and artist, and former Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com, she enjoys staying warm in Charleston and cool in the Hamptons.


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