Design Down Under I DANIEL EMMA

DE_BIG_mishmash_chairs_web_o Studio Daniel Emma, hailing from Adelaide, has expanded its scope. While previously focusing mainly on accessories, they have now launched a collection of furniture and lightning – all handmade in Australia.
They started their design studio in 200, as a way to express their thoughts and ideas through products. Starting from simple shapes and forms, they create unexpected objects. You might know their work from the Wrong for Hay cones and towers. Drawing insight and influence from Australian culture, landscape and everyday life, they look differently at things that seem commonplace at first. The use of material, shapes and colour reflect the diversity and general niceness that is so typical of that land down under.

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Stuhlhockerbank I KRAUD

kraud-public-space-chairs Stuhlhockerbank, by German design studio Kraud, is a series of seating for public spaces. The unusual form of the bench makes people think in an other way about how to sit in a public space. The object seems familiar and yet at the same time surprising, enhanced by a sensual and poetic dimension. It’s giving you the possibility to make an other connection with the public space but also with the people around you. Are you going to sit in front of someone, or are you turning your back at the other person?

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Aura I BJORN VAN DEN BERG

Bjørn-van-den-Berg-Aura-01-e1398591399741 The Aura series is a project by young Norwegian designer Bjørn van den BergAura is a collection of hemispherical shaped mirrors that have been developed using solid aluminium that has been electroplated with copper, chrome or nickel, producing a beautiful finish.
The shape and the material of the mirrors turns the whole of the object into a reflecting surface rather than just one side, like our standard mirrors. When the object is exposed to light, reflections come from the flat mirror surface and from the circular body. This creates different reflections, making you aware of your surroundings and the changes in light throughout the day.

S.

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Sequence Zero I STUDIO HANDS

Naamloos2 Studio Hands is specialized in graphic design and illustration. They design campaigns, identities and publications for all kinds of media. In each project they search for a unique and powerful concept. For Sequence Zero – a creative workspace and co-working place in Arnhem – they designed a flexible signage system. Sequence Zero is a place where people can create in a stimulating environment and, because of the different disciplines that ar at work at the same place,  it’s also a place where cross-fertilization finds place and creative fields overlap. Besides it’s obvious function of pointing out the way, the signing system also functions as a visual representation of what Sequence Zero is.

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Wish you were there | OLAFUR ELIASSON

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You know those interesting and beautiful exhibitions stuck on your wish you were there-list because they’re too far away from your hometown to actually visit? Well, RIVERBED by Olafur Eliasson is one of those. He’s one of those artists/designers/architects who really knows how to represent all of those slashes in his work. He merges spaces and atmospheres together in such an autonomous way that it leaves you speechless.
Imagine yourself taking a walk along the riverbed of Eliassons’ work inside Louisiana instead of wandering around your local forest. Wouldn’t that be a dream?

D.

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Graphic worlds I KHUAN+KTRON

planisphere-personal_o Previous weekend I visited Grafixx, a festival in Antwerp bringing together the most exciting graphic artists, illustrators and publishers.  Among those talented graphic artists was studio KHUAN+KTRON. The studio consists out of Ningtiendo Sehgah (JAP), Mikhail Mitmalkan (RUS) and Steebz (BE).

KHUAN+KTRON makes colourful, meticulous infographics, illustrations and layouts. They create beautiful graphic worlds with an extreme amount of detail. Let your eyes feast on the colours and beautiful illustrations, keep looking and you’ll keep finding new things.
Their work has been feautured in magazines such as Wired UK Magazine, De Tijd, Weekend Knack,…

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Whiffs of fashion I AGONIST

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Scandinavian usually reads a a synonym for minimalism, but in the case of AGONIST we’re reaching the borders of haute couture rather than entering the world of wooden furniture and tasteful design. And that’s actually no surprise considering the forces behind the label have a history in fashion. AGONIST is founded by Christine and Niclas Lydeen, partners in life and creativity. Christine is the one with a background in fashion, who decided to trade her Parisian life for a future in Sweden. That’s where and when she met Niclas, an Art Director and visual artist. The two hooked up and decided to focus on perfume instead, baptizing their label AGONIST, as in agony or pain. A pretty ironic tongue-in-cheek name considering the fact perfume exalts nothing but delight. They operate under the poetic tagline: “Unique fragrances embraced by handcrafted Swedish glass”.

So far, AGONIST has launched a series of nine scents that are ranged from ethereal to audacious, approaching the art of smell like an intriguing spectrum. Bearing in mind their professional history, Christine and Niclas consider the packaging to be equally important as the perfume itself. You can opt to have your scent bottled in limited handmade crystal bottles in their sculpture line or to take it with you in a more subdued uniform spray bottle. The latter are uniform, but every scent is recognisable through the variable colour of the small droplet on the bottom of the flask. It subtly relates to the colour of their more extravagant counterpartyed art bottles. The fragrances are therefor color-coded. The bottle label provides a full list of ingredient notes. In short AGONIST is about perfume as a multi-sensorial statement-piece. There’s something mesmerizing about them, maybe because those bottles hold something that is just as intangible and beautiful as the Northern Light.

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Moving Mountains I SYRETTE LEW

7 Moving Mountains is a collection by Hawaiian-born but now Brooklynite Syrette Lew. She designs bags and jewelry in her own studio, but her speciality is furniture design.
The objects in this collection balance between useful simplicty and playful quirkiness. Geometric shapes and spunky colours give them a modern, minimalist vibe with a twist.  The name Moving Mountains is a tribute to the Hawaiian archipelago and its “imperceptible movement northwestward”: the island are constantly moving up north.
All objects are made of handcrafted woodworking techniques, in combination with black steel. Lew uses wood, because there’s a familiarity to it that no other material has. This makes it a perfect material for at home, and adds a sense of timelessness.

B.

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Cartons and Coffee beans | CARL KLEINER x ICA

CK_ICA-fastigheter_construction Carl Kleiner has added yet another clever series to his oeuvre. Miles away from the usual supermarket ads – blatant colours, loud slogans, big logos – he kept things clean and simple for ICA. He created playful scenes that evoke the of surroundings of a supermarket, using products that you can find in the store. Milk cartons, broccoli, pasta, sugar cubes and coffee beans all play their part in these miniature worlds.

H.

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Sleek | NON

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NON is a new Polish fashion brand, launched by Anna Dobek and Agata Macios. Its debut collection consists of five sleek, timeless pieces. These high-quality, minimalistic garments can be combined at will, creating a perfect base for your wardrobe. Clean cuts and seemingly simple lines will make you stand out in the chicest way.
Each piece is made from fine merino wool – which is sure to keep you warm – and is produced in Poland under decent social, environmental and ethical circumstances.

H.

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Cooking techniques | THINGK

CLOGK Considering electronic devices are becoming more and more influential in our lives, Italian design studio Thingk are looking at ways to adapt technology to a more natural model of interaction, based on touch, voice ­recognition and physical gestures. Fed up with boring looks, poor quality and a lack of innovation, the first two products in the GK series combine sleek design with innovative technology. The clock and scales are controlled by simple hand movements, making it easy and natural to use.

Resting on one side, the LED numbers of GKILO function as scales, displaying the weight of the objects you put on top.  When you flip it over, the lights will display the current time. You can easily reset the scale or adjust the time by hand motion.
The second object – CLOGK – acts as an eye-catching paperweight or accessory, but when activated it also functions as an analog clock or a kitchen timer.
Both the GKILO and CLOGK have a wireless connection to a mobile app, expanding their options: when weighing an object on GKILO, users can utilize the app to identify the object as a specific food item. The app will use the food type and weight to estimate cooking time, and transmit the information to CLOGK, setting it into timer mode. This connection between products allows for seamless and simple interaction.

H.

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The Mirror Stage | ICH IST EIN ANDERER

leo_web_01 Ich ist ein Anderer is the title of the collection by Leonie Barth, a German fashion designer. The collection was inspired by the psychoanalyst theories of Jacques Lacan and his idea about ‘the mirror stage’, in which he claims that our mirror image completes our identity. Barth uses questions like who am I, who would I like to be or how would I like to appear as a guide for this collection.
Following the principles of symmetry and complementation, the clothes develop through the reflection of their own image: missing parts are added and other parts are reflected to make the piece complete.
The bright colours, straight lines and shiny textures create a clean yet playful whole, in which the mirrored surfaces only add mystery.

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Pictures by Lucie Marsmann.

 

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Object XI & Object XII | TILL WIEDECK x COS

HelloMe_COS_ObjectXi-XII_04 Object XI & XII is a collaboration between COS and Till Wiedeck, founder of design studio HelloMe. Object XI & XII is a unique interpretation of HelloMe’s Critical Objects from 2012. It’s a continuation in which they explore the border between functionality and abstract sculpture even further. A unique rubber surface was developed: it looks like a Travatine stone but still has the tactile and functional aspects of rubber.
The table will be displayed in COS stores worldwide from 20th of November 2014.

H.

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About Us | JEAN JULLIEN

a1-trends Jean Jullien – originally born in Nantes but now living in London – is quickly becoming a big name in illustration and graphics. His drawings are used in campaigns for brands like Eurostar, Opening Ceremony and Byron Burgers, have made it to multiple magazine covers en he has a few books to his name.
His characteristic thick brushstrokes and blocks of colour might look naive and maybe even childlike at first, but they are often witty, sharp analyses of society and politics – like the influence of technology in allo? and social interaction in his new series Us. The playful, popular images amuse the audience while engaging them on a deeper level, making them think about what is depicted as well.
Together with his brother, he also works on moving images. Changing between mediums allows him to use his drawings in other forms and in ways that wouldn’t be possible on a piece of paper.

After his first exhibition at Kemistry Gallery  in 2013, his second show will open on December 4th. Us is a collection of observations he made while living in London and New York, with a particular interest in people, how they live and how they interact and communicate. This will also be the very last exhibition that will be held at Charlotte Road, since Kemistry will be moving house soon.

H.

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Wireframe | BASKET CONTAINER

basket-container07_akihiro_yoshida These Basket Containers are one of the latest projects of prolific Japanese brand nendo. Inspired by artisanal wire netting cooking tools, they gave minimal, contemporary design a hint of ancient craftsmanship. The conatainers are the result of a collaboration with Kyoto-based Kanaami-Tsuji, a firm that has carefully preserved old traditions and arts.
Each basket is hand-bent and can be used separately or as a table, when used with the matte frames. The table comes in three heights, two colours and two shapes, so combining is not a problem at all. The eyes in the wire are also just big enough to put the table legs through, allowing them to be stacked, mixed and matched.

H.

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Windhoek | MARTA VELASCO VELASCO

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Marta Velasco Velasco is a young multidisciplinary designer who studied Visual Communication at ELISAVA in Barcelona – where she was born and raised –  and who recently graduated from Textile Design at Central Saint Martins, London.
For her last project, Windhoek, Marta created a series of fabric pieces inscribed in different contexts such as fashion, surface design or set design.
The Sound Tiles series for instance, sets up a collection of insulation panels conceived to cover walls while controlling the acoustics of the space.
Marta drew inspiration from the Namibian culture. Combining reality and fiction, she takes us on “a journey through extreme landscapes, bizarre post colonization traces, people with extraordinary costumes and abandoned German towns in the middle of the Namib desert, all wrapped with almost magical stories about the diamond mining in the early 20th C.”
Influenced by materiality and the african custom of reusing, most of the components she used were sustainable recycled or upcycled materials. She applied a mix of techniques to achieve a combination of screen-printed and digital print finishings, which results in a unique range of patterns and textures.

Windhoek was recently exhibited during London Design Festival as part of the Restless Futures exhibition.

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Cheerful Choices | WHIM

blu Whim is not your ordinary online shop. Quality and creativity are put way above quantity, which has led to a petite but pleasant compilation of brands and objects. Whim wants to support small labels and emerging artists, with a focus on creativity and originality. You can find socks by Bonne Maison for example, or pompom hats by All Knitwear.
The pictures by Claudia Zalla – colourful, playful, sharp – only add to the fun: all objects live happily together in a world of cheeriness and splendour. Whim serves random objects of beauty, which will probably make your hand move to the ‘put in bag’ button … on a whim.

H.

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The Fine Line I MICHAEL ANASTASSIADES

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Throughout history,  the basic textbook definition that ‘creation’ means only as much as the process of building an object from scratch and gradually adding more and more details, has been a golden standard. Michael Anastassiades believes it should be the other way round. This London-based Cypriot designer has been working on product-, furniture and environmental design since he founded his studio in 1994. Whatever he does gains nothing but praise, putting his name on top of the It-list of contemporary designers. Although the objects he creates are totally utilitarian, they border between fine art and design. No wonder his work is part of the permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art and the V&A, and leading design companies like FLOS come knocking on his door. If that already isn’t enough to gain our full respect, he has been running his own selected eponymous company line MICHAEL ANASTASSIADES since 2007, which consists of his signature pieces, a collection of lighting, furniture, jewellery and tabletop objects.

Anastassiades’ style has been described as neo-modern and his vision can surely stand next to that of modernist predecessors like Charlotte Perriand or Mies Van der Rohe. He has chosen the path of thoughtful simplicity, making intruiging compositions with merely basic forms. Anastassiades loves balance. Through the fine, flowing lines of his design, he lets form and exquisite materials lead the way so that the beauty of marble, glass and copper can come to its fullest splendour. The elegant lamps and objects are so ethereally pure that they almost seem to be floating on air. His work looks rich and poor at the same time: it may all look very basic and clean, but his lamps draw upon state-of-the-art engineering (they even come with manuals and remote controls). That’s a rather ambiguous kind of ‘effortlessly chic’ that certainly calls for closer inspection.
All in all, Anastassiades illustrates that sometimes the simplest things in life are really the most sophisticated. That truly is going back to the essence of modernism.

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Tundra | CHIYOME

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Sharp lines, subtle colors and smart proportions.
The recognizably clean and minimalist perspective influenced by contemporary art, architecture and furniture remains the storyline of New York based label Chiyome.

Tundra is an affirmation of raw simplicity. Anna Lynett, the designer of Chiyome, experimented with alternative materials, while new methods of structuring led to the complete exclusion of hardware. Only vital elements remain.

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Look and feel | FEBRIK

tumblr_nbe6winaXZ1rtfp2fo2_1280 FEBRIK is a new brand of interior textiles, founded by Renee Merckx and Jos Pelders in Utrecht. By offering a collaborative attitude and innovative techniques, FEBRIK challenges designers and architects to stop seeing textiles as a lesser branch or as the last step in the design process, but instead see it a a starting point.
FEBRIK develops and manufactures its collection in-house, which allows great freedom when it comes to design and customization and which also has significant consequences on an environmental level: they take great care of minimal impact, endurance and quality.
Collaborations with top-notch interior brands and designers like Andersen & Voll, Bertjan Pot, Patricia Urquiola and Form Us With Love definitely make this brand one to watch.

H.

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