The name Kaasa refers to a beacon that was crucial to sailors in the Bay of Bothnia in Finland. Reminiscent of bonfires, these stone or wooden structures guided mariners in the right direction, or to good fishing grounds. In perilous times, a fire was lit on the kaasa to warn of the enemy’s approach. This forebear of the lighthouse has inspired Ilkka Suppanen, a sailing enthusiast born in coastal Finland.
“Design is more about values than forms and colours. My aim was an archetypical, iconic gathering point. Rather like a large candle, I wanted this product to bring people together around light and warmth.”
- Ilkka Suppanen
Karmi Tea Canisters Developed by the Shoshen lacquerware from Yamanka, introducing, delicately and intricately crafted products for the home. The origin of Yamanka ware dates as far back to the Azuchi–Momoyama period (1568–1600). During this time, craftsmen developed their wood curving techniques that has now become distinguishing features of Yamanka lacquer ware. Shoshen lacquer ware respects the beautiful grain of natural wood and perfect base work. They intentionally don’t overpaint the wood in order expose the beautiful grain. It takes over a year to produce these beautiful artisan pieces.
Karmi Tea Canisters, by Shoshen
Inspired by Classic MGM musicals, Jaime Hayon has designed a home furniture series of chairs, tables and vessels called Showtime collection. These playful vases are a more than passive flower holders – they have personality. A special edition of the vases in gold were exhibited during Stage, at the Aram Gallery in London.
Jaime Hayon is the most intriguing figure in new Spanish design. He has energy, talent and a style of his own, he plays with the boundaries between classicism and modernity, all of which are all distilled into the Showtime Vases.
Formerly called “witch’s eye” convex mirrors adorned with a large ornate frame. These mirrors give the strange and intriguing feeling that a someone else is watching us from the other side. This convex mirror sits on a conical foot like a statue of a character observing his environment.
Oeil de Sorcière, by Ionna Vautrin, for Moustache, Photography by Felipe Ribon
Designed by Nanny Still in 1973 this matt stainless steel cutlery continues to delight 21st century diners in both everyday and formal table settings with its genuine retro elegance. Mango’s bold 70s design is made in Finland of matte brushed 18/10 stainless steel and designed to last a lifetime.
Nanny Still is one of Finland’s most colorful designers with a wide range of products. She works with the same clear elegance in a variety of different materials: metal, glass, ceramics. Nanny Still masters almost everything to do with art and industrial design. She was awarded the Pro Finlandia medal in 1972 and the Diploma of Honour at the Triennale in Milan in 1954, to name just a few of her awards.
Iittala Mango Flatware, by Nanny Still
The concept of a ceramic swan came from Antonio’s desire to have a watering-can connected to the aesthetical and practical world of gardening. Why we can not insert in it a glimpse of our indoor daily life, by transforming it in a tea pot? After all watering plants could be compared to pouring tea for friends. Changing the concept and the use of two common objects – like a watering can and a kettle – is a way for Antonio to magnify our usual life and putting some fantasy and magic in such tenderhearted gestures. The hybrid shape of the tall kettle could be seen as a weird swan and the short one could be seen as baby elephant with is very long trunk.
Bathtub fun and other aquatic adventures are guaranteed with Bote. Composed by a cork hull and a plastic add-on piece (a sail, a row of engine chimneys or a cabin) Bote is your ticket to plenty of imaginative seafaring. This indomitable will brave troubled waters, heavy downpours and pirate raids: cork’s buoyancy ensures that, no matter how perilous the journey, Bote will always resurface for new bathtub play.
Hong Kong-based Michael Young has been amongst the most successful and influential designers of his generation. Works in China – Part 1 Design Art is an exhibition showcasing the latest and most iconic works of Michael Young’s 20-year industrial design career, plus the launch of his book Works in China written by John Heskett. The book delves into the process of design documenting a number of Young’s products from the initial sketches, right through to the finished products. An eye-opening look at the staggering amount of work that goes into producing everything around us and must-read for anyone interested in design.
“This is my first show in 10 years. I started out making one offs in London as it was all that one could make back then, but it was a passion. After years of mass production it’s refreshing to go back to my roots and play a little.”
- Michael Young