Ralston Bau is an independent studio working with decoding the – on so many levels – complex world we move in, to understand and reflect on visible and invisible issues. Their transformative practice turns ideas into action, connect people to our common spaces – and turn complex question into essential objects.
In 2001, Birgitta Ralston and Alexandre Bau founded the design studio Ralston Bau in Paris, with an eye for the unexpected and the yet unexplored areas within the design field. Thus Transplant emerged in 2007, an experimental design centre located by a Norwegian fjord, where a successful five-year collaboration between art and design was formed. Between 2009 and 2015, the studio conducted the research through design programme Ideal Lab, where they invited 52 artists, designers, and sociologists to work in local contexts and create their own work within social thematics.
With the aim to pursue transversal design research in various contexts, Ralston Bau founded Idealist Institute together with likeminded partners in Norway, Sweden, France, and UK. The idealists share values to create regenerative and more fair projects in their daily practice and local context.
The studio has received several national and international design awards, like the “Red Dot Product Design Award” in 2013 and several design and art museums have purchased their works for their permanent collections. In 2010, they were honoured the community award Fjalerprisen for outstanding contributions to local culture and industry. During the period from 2017 to 2020, Birgitta and Alexandre are associated artists of MAGASIN des Horizons – CNAC in Grenoble. They teach at the University of Bergen – Institute for Design; Design Thinking, Bergen – Executive Master Strategic Design for Innovation; Central Saint Martins, London; and L'école supérieure d'art & de design Marseille-Méditerranée og Annecy. Ralston Bau’s studios are located in Bergen, Norway and Marseille, France.