The Vancouver furniture designer stays curious about design.

Design, according to Henry Norris, is actually a lot like sports. “There’s an element of victory and defeat,” says the 31-year-old Vancouver-based furniture designer. “I like that feedback is harsh and that you have a very strong sounding board as to whether what you’re doing is successful.”

If this surprising analogy wasn’t enough evidence that Norris likes to take the route less travelled, his designs will hammer the point home. Each piece explores the possibilities offered by new materials and techniques: his sculptural Prairie screen dividers combine lacquered aluminum and plastic composite, while the sleek steel Connect credenza creatively combines modern manufacturing with traditional joinery techniques.

His work as a whole, says Norris, is all about “staying curious”—which is why he is now experimenting with resin, presenting him with yet another way of looking at the world. “It inverts the design thinking—you’re working with a negative shape instead of a positive.”