Paul Kelley, designer-owner his eponymous company, began working with timber as both a carpenter and a guitar maker in the late 1970s. In the early '90s, he refocused his career on furniture making and participated in his first group show in London in 1993—which in turn led to his first commission to build and design the shop for London’s Design Museum. In 1994, he moved to the US, where he was inspired by the architecture, the car culture, and the American art scene—influences which can still be seen in his work today. Upon returning to the UK in 2000, Paul worked in interior design before opening the Paul Kelley atelier in 2004.
Kelley creates eye-catching furniture and objects, each of which is sketched by hand and intricately modeled before production. He is known for working with materials not usually associated with handmade furniture, such as acrylic, laminates, aluminum, felt, concrete, and copper. When asked to describe his aesthetic, Kelley remarks, “This is furniture for now and forever.”
After twenty years working in furniture design, Kelley is now recognized to be of the UK’s most innovative designers with an international reputation for both interiors and furniture. By pushing the boundaries of traditional and accepted materials, Kelley has gone on to win a Wallpaper Design Award, a nomination for the Arts Foundation Fellowship, and was short-listed for the position of designing a new business class section for Lufthansa.