DMTV Milkshake: Jerry Helling Finds Sublime Design in Unlikely Places

09.30.20 | By
DMTV Milkshake: Jerry Helling Finds Sublime Design in Unlikely Places

This week’s DMTV Milkshake guest is Jerry Helling, President and Creative Director of Bernhardt Design. As the Creative Director of Bernhardt Design, Jerry Helling led its evolution from an esteemed furniture company to an agenda-setting brand with a roster of designers that could double as a who’s-who of global talent. While he’s championed work by Jaime Hayon, Yves Béhar, Monica Forster, and many others, Helling has simultaneously sought out emerging talent. As the inaugural President of the Be Original Americas initiative in 2014, he worked to give the industry the tools it needs to protect their ideas and prevent knockoffs; as the Founder of ICFF Studio in 2005, Helling has trained the spotlight on their work.

Here, Helling explains why designers should learn to communicate with words as well as products, making an impact with design in El Salvador, as well as what he’s learned from Bernhardt’s several collaborations with furniture designer/visual artist/Brooklyn 99 star/former NFLer Terry Crews: “I knew he was creative in many fields,” Helling says “I didn’t realize just how many — or how he could go from in the morning working on Brooklyn 99 to in the afternoon working on his incredible, interactive children’s book to in the evening working on a screenplay — and still make time for design.” Finally, he names the two best-designed products in his house. “My cliche answer is still my Apple TV remote — I wish all objects were as intuitive and simple and easy to use,” he says. For the other, let’s take a step with Jerry into his kitchen. 

View Jerry’s DMTV Milkshake episode above, then check out the rest of the series here.

Listen to the Clever podcast episode with Jerry Helling here.

Author: Diana Ostrom, who has written for Wallpaper, Interior Design, ID, The Wall Street Journal, and other outlets, is also the author of Faraway Places, a newsletter about travel.

Milkshake, DMTV (Design Milk TV)’s first regular series, shakes up the traditional interview format by asking designers, creatives, educators and industry professionals to select interview questions at random from their favorite bowl or vessel. During their candid discussions, you’ll not only gain a peek into their personal homeware collections, but also valuable insights into their work, life and passions.