About Roger Questel
After 15 years of designing tiles for the kitchen and bath I wanted to capture so many of the ideas, inventions and inspirations that might otherwise have languished in the back room of our design studio. I’ve always loved to make things. The textures of wood, metal, clay, glass and stone have been my lifelong friends.
This all began when I was 16 and carving the handles of my family’s tennis racquets. Little cars, bowling pins and things like that. At 19, I got my first job was making sculpted furniture (70’s style) in Manhattan. It was there that a wood carver from Spain inspired me. Beautiful details appeared beneath his tools. I learned to carve from him. For me, woodcarving became the love of my life. The rest can be said with pictures.
I was soon working on my own, living in a store front between Prince and Spring Street in Soho. Ten feet wide, fifty feet long, I lived in the back and worked in the front. It was wonderful. I entered Parson’s School of Design and graduated with a degree in Environmental Design. It was a heady time. Lots of interesting work. I did a two year project for Orson Wells and worked on the grand staircase of the Ralph Lauren store on Madison Ave.
Well, it was about then, around 1986, that I created some simple bowls that I was going to cast in bronze and sell in galleries. Sadly, that was too expensive in bronze, so I began mixing resin and metal powder. I figured out another way to cast my work. The new metal was so light and natural looking I made some wall tiles out of it. After showing a few architects, I was asked to create trim and medallions for the upper floors of Radio City Music Hall. Worldwide patents soon followed. Questech tile company was born.
In 1990, the Rolex Corporation recognized Questech’s® in its publication, "The 1990 Rolex Awards for Enterprise". In 1991, the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of Design, the Cooper-Hewitt, inducted Questech® into its permanent collection of materials.
Great fun, very exciting, lots of new ideas. In a word Business. Complicated, busy and intense…. Help!!! And indeed help arrived. It arrived in the form of Barry Culkin, President of Boston Whaler and head of U.S. operations at Reebok. Barry and I joined forces 16 years ago to create the premier decorative tile company in the U.S.
So for the past 20 years I have been engaged in the world of commerce.
But now it’s time to make bowls again. Just for the joy of it. Just for the beauty of it. Just to make things again.