Stripping away the frills poses the risk of coming up against bare essentials, sometimes in a highly visible way. A fine example are Alessandro Zambelli’s new lights, designed for .exnovo. He calls the collection “Afillia,” a name borrowed from botany. In plant terms, it means leafless, though not lifeless: surely an apt image for a collection of luminous essentials and airy voids.
The Afillia range of six lighting accessories consists of three table lamps and three pendant lights. The base or socket ring is in Swiss pine, a premium wood from the Alto Adige mountains, hand-crafted according to the region’s ancient traditions. The wood fitting locks on to a light diffuser in polyamide (also known as nylon fibre), sintered by professional 3D printing.
The results are furnishing extras, either one-offs or limited editions. The avant-garde technology really does print them, but the machined product is in perfect harmony with the intuitive skill of the master-craftsmen who shape the material from the amorphous polymer block. They finish off the process by hand, lending the personal touch to every creation. The centrepiece of each accessory is a diffuser which embraces and embellishes space. Delicate, lace-like patterns with their geometrical pinholes give rise to two-dimensional origami in thin, curvaceous spirals. Free to waver at will, the light casts fleeting shadows, then beams into unexpected focus, forming compact halos, round and bright. This is energy in fluid form, in the no-man’s land between stuff and shape, air and light.
Afillia by Alessandro Zambelli for .exnovo
The increased use of screens, emitting their constant bright white light, is blurring the distinction between work and leisure, between day and night. But for us human beings it is best to experience light of varying warmth and intensity within the 24-hour cycle: bright white during the day to help us stay alert and concentrate; warmer, soothing light during the evening to help us wind down and prepare for sleep. Arnout Meijer has designed the Thanks for the Sun Series to allow users to adapt the temperature and character of the light in their rooms.
Thanks for the Sun Serie, by Arnout Meijer Studio
The MOOT (Mood of Our Time) Carbon Fiber Chair was designed and developed by Ross Lovegrove in partnership with Established & Sons.
MOOT Carbon Fiber Chair, by Ross Lovegrove, for Established & Sons
Nendo has produced a series of lamps that use the traditional technique and modified it to create seamless three-dimensional washi forms.
Charlotte Perriand is regarded as one of the most influential designers of the early modern movement, acknowledging the increasingly machine-driven culture of the 1920s and ’30s and introducing the profound change in aesthetic values to interiors. As a true pioneer in the application of materials like steel, aluminium and glass to furniture, the french architect and designer established an expansive breadth of work that, to this day, remains the archetype of an evolutionary shift in the industry. When she was just 24-years-old, she commenced a decade-long collaboration with Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret, during which period the trio conceived and developed a series of tubular steel chairs, existing now as icons of an era. The work of Perriand will be a significant presence at Design Miami/ Art Basel Miami 2013 with presentations at the Raleigh Hotel, the Louis Vuitton Boutique and the Cassina showroom.
Dutch designer Richard Hutten has been invited to guest curate the interior of the Sonneveld House by altering the original layout with his own product designs.
The Sonneveld House Museum stands adjacent to the NAI on the corner of Jongkindstraat and Rochussenstraat in Rotterdam. Built in the early nineteen thirties, it is one of the best-preserved houses in the Nieuwe Bouwen style, the Dutch branch of the International School of Modernism. It was designed by the architecture firm of Brinkman & Van der Vlugt, also known for the Van Nelle Factory and Feyenoord Stadium. The Sonneveld House opened to the public as a house museum of the NAI in March 2001, following a period of intensive restoration and refurbishment. As a visitor, you can see for yourself what it was like to live in a hypermodern home in 1933.
The design light has adjustable arms and an orientable head for a flexible use. The LED light is operated by means of a built-in sensor dimmer located in its head.
Traffic is a collection of furniture using wire and upholstery. The correlation between the three-dimensional line drawing of the metal rod and the geometric volumes of the cushions marks a significant shift from the common connotation of wire furniture. The unassuming simplicity of its conception impart a pleasant casualness. The refinement of detailing and carefully tailored proportions stimulate a resounding elegance. The inherent logic of construction creates a formal grammar which allows for a number of functional declinations to form the Traffic collection: an armchair, a two seater sofa, a small bench (which also serves as ottoman), a chaise longue. All pieces are available with upholstery in fabric or leather. The metal structure is either powder coated (in high gloss colours) or chrome plated.
Traffic Collection, by Konstantin Grcic, for Magis
A universal floor lamp with a “trick” in an extruded and textile covered plastic profile, which carries the LED head: moving the head along the profile changes its orientation continuously. Rope Trick floor lamp serves as a reading light next to a bed, a chair or a table. After sliding the head in its up-most position, the light is cast upwards onto the wall or ceiling which creates an indirect atmospheric illumination.
Rope Trick Lamp, by Stefan Diez Office, for Wrong for Hay
Benjamin Hubert has designed the world’s lightest timber table as part of an internal studio research project into lightweight constructions. The table, titled Ripple, is 2.5 metres long, 1 metre wide, and weighs just 9 kilograms. Made using 70-80% less material than a standard timber table, Ripple can be assembled and manoeuvred by a single person. The table’s impressive strength to weight ratio is enabled by an innovative production process of corrugating plywood for furniture through pressure lamination, which was developed by Benjamin Hubert with Canadian manufacturer Corelam.
Ripple is made entirely from 3 ply 0.8mm birch aircraft plywood, a timber sourced only in Canada, where the table is manufactured. The material is the same as that used in construction of the Hughes H-4 Hercules – popularly known as the “Spruce Goose” – the world’s largest all timber airplane. The strength of the material in combination with the unique lamination process means the edge of Ripple measures just 3.5mm. Ripple is minimal in its design language, employing a simple knockdown construction. The top surface is corrugated plywood overlaid by a flat sheet, and the A-frame legs are a sandwich construction of two corrugated plywood layers.
Ripple Table, by Benjamin Hubert