On the boundary of abstraction, this lamp, thought as a picture consists of a succession of plans, staging materials and their plastic quality. The light appears in a slit like in an open door, putting together the poetry of the forms and the preciosity of the materials. This sculptural lamp is the formal vision of a dreamed freedom.
Nightfall on Livingstone, by Numéro 111
The Tub chair was definitely a unique fusion where Wegner emerged the new moulding plywood technique with upholstery and traditional wood work in solid wood even adding an angle adjustment mechanism for the back. There is no doubt that the complexity of this design is a brilliant example of the bold and pioneering experiments that Wegner conducted throughout his life, this from 1954 being one of the earliest and the Circle Chair from 1986 being the latest of that kind.
“These chairs are important because they are outstanding and unique examples of Wegner’s work with easy chairs, but also because they are unique examples of good design in general. They offer inspiration with pioneering concepts, and they do it as extremely good quality products that are comfortable and will last for a lifetime. The origin of the name ‘Tub Chair’ certainly refers to the shape of the back shell. It was never given a number. We will give it the model number 530.” explains Master of Craftsmen Kasper Holst Pedersen, PP Møbler.
Tub Chair, by Hans Wegner, for PP Møbler
Photography by Anders Hybel Brauner
The dramatic site within an isolated, disused quarry on the edge of the Brecon National Park demanded an architectural intervention of elegant simplicity. With a modest budget and to counter the construction complexities associated with touching the quarry walls, we developed an object building suspended within the basin – collecting light and focusing on distant views like a camera Obscura. We chose to ‘touch the ground lightly’ to heighten the spatial drama and tension between an isolated pure form and the static noise of the exposed rock face. The new home will be constructed of in-situ concrete for the first floor cantilever slab. A combined heat recovery unit will be used in conjunction with high performance insulated structural panels (SIP) – for the walls and 2nd floor, all helping to achieve a high level of thermal efficiency and air tightness. The passive strategies employed emphasise the importance of maximising long-lasting energy performance improvements to the fabric of a dwelling, before adding the optimum renewable solution.
House for a Photographer, Pontypridd, Wales, by Hyde+Hyde Architects
Doshi Levien (Nipa Doshi and Jonathan Levien) has conceived a set of storage cabinets that resemble the improvised dwellings fundamentally found in developing countries across the globe. London studio’s ‘Shanty’ storage units for BD barcelona feature monochromatic or colorful corrugated patchworks on their façades, disguising rationally and carefully considered volumes within for hiding belongings.
Shanty Storage Cabinet, by Doshi Levien, for BD Barcelona
An apartment built on the mezzanine level of a building overlooking the square that symbolises the city of Turin, Piazza San Carlo erected by the Dukes of Savoy and in particular Maria Cristina di Francia, who reigned as “Madama Reale” during the first half of the 17th century, turns into a modern-day theatre representing a certain idea of the bourgeois home, the home of the Turin professional middle classes, through its spaces and the furniture inside it, all embodying reassuring engineering precision and subtle concerns.
The building plan, characterised by a tunnel-shaped progression from the rear to the drawing room facing the square, the windows opening onto the square itself with their given shape and size of the “oculus” on the building facades marking the perimeter, and the need to set out the relational spaces in the living quarters as zones and premises that (to a greater or lesser degree) can be seen from outside, provide the initial input for the construction of a vaguely metaphysical home environment.
Apartment at Turin, Italy, by Andrea Marcante & Adelaide Testa
Photography by Carola Ripamonti
Richard Pare’s fascination with modernist architecture shines through his vast collection of images taken over several decades. Living Laboratory will illustrate how he photographs buildings, taking care to reveal both their many subtleties and magnificent monumentality. Pare’s perceptive point of view brings into play dramatic use of light, (always achieved with no supplemental lighting) as well as varied weather conditions and seasons.
To achieve his images he deploys a wide range of technical approaches, combining conventional film and a view camera with the latest advances in digital image making. These state-of-the-art aspects of his work serve to highlight the majesty of his subjects without in any way overwhelming the purposes of the undertaking. He is also attentive to the effects of the passage of time and changing social conditions on the works he chooses to portray. The absence of human beings, coupled with signs of wear and decay, including creeping vegetation and the lingering evidence of past eras, emphasise the impermanence of seemingly solid structures and their struggle for survival.
While Pare’s work covers many subjects, Living Laboratory reveals his admiration for Le Corbusier and Konstantin Melnikov, two of the finest and earliest proponents of modernist principles in architecture.
Living Laboratory: Richard Pare on Le Corbusier and Konstantin Melnikov, March 21 – May 11, 2014, PM Gallery & House, London, United Kingdom
Photography by Richard Pare
Italian architect and illustrator Federico Babina has recently unveiled a new project, this time taking a look at the connection between architecture and the visual arts. Titled ‘Archist’, the project comprises a series of illustrations of imaginary buildings inspired by famous works of art. Beginning with the question: what would a house designed by Dalí or a museum by Miró look like, the resulting images demonstrate what Federico Babina believes is the ”implicit partnership between Architecture and Art.” They sometimes treat the facade as a canvas decorated with a well-known piece of art, while in other cases, they draw inspiration from the artist’s overall output to create an inventive architectural composition. Quite interestingly, and probably unbeknownst to the artist himself, the project also shows how the visual arts world is just as male-dominated as the world of architecture, as only two women (Jeanne-Claude – Christo’s partner – and Anne Truitt) made it onto Babina’s list of 27 ”most popular artists.”
List of artists: Keith Haring, Sol LeWitt, Anish Kapoor, Salvador Dalí, Marcel Duchamp, Pablo Picasso, Damien Hirst, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Donald Judd, Joan Miró, Mark Rothko, Gerhard Richter, Richard Serra, Piet Mondrian, Ernesto Neto, Ellsworth Kelly, Josef Albers, Antoni Tàpies, James Turell, Frank Stella, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Anne Truitt, Lucio Fontana, Tony Smith, Peter Halley, Kazimir Málevich.
This new build house is set in a landscape of exceptional natural beauty. The scheme employs a series of linear pavilions that step down the gradual fall of the site, creating a meandering path through the house, from the entrance on the west to the living space and sea views on the east.
The collection of mono-pitched volumes are staggered across the site and the spaces between them are orchestrated to create a series of semi-enclosed sheltered courtyards. At the end of the journey, a larger terrace reveals spectacular views of the cliffs, sea and the islands of West Cork. The existing house is roofed in natural slate with rendered white walls. The new structures are entirely clad in Irish blue limestone to appear as shards of rock in the landscape. These will weather over time to match the surrounding cliffs.
House at Goleen, Ireland, by Niall Mclaughlin Architects
An exercise in contrasts, the Copenhagen Pendant fuses the classic and the modern, the maritime and the industrial. Its matte-lacquered metal lampshade disperses the light in a subtle but spectacular way, resembling the classic gaslight feel of the bleak Copenhagen piers.
“The biggest challenge in designing the Copenhagen Pendant was to meet our own expectations in making an equally sculptural and functional light,” says Signe Bindslev Henriksen, co-founder of Space Copenhagen.
Originally Space Copenhagen designed one version of the pendant, but the project subsequently expanded into a series of three sizes and five matte shades. “The starting point was to create a design which would allow us to mix various metal finishes,” says Peter Bundgaard Rützou, the studio’s other founding partner. The result is a flexible light that works in many different spaces, on its own, or in a cluster.
Francesco Faccin designed this project to provide an answer to the provocative message sent to him from the Tempo Italiano platform. It invited its participants to reflect on design past and present, on the meaning of production today, on a return to the origins of the basic needs and actions within a system of sustainable values.
Re-Fire is a kit for manually lighting a fire; it was inspired by the systems used by primitive Man. Two pieces of different types of wood – a piece of hardwood and a piece of softwood) are rubbed together; in just a few seconds, the friction produces smouldering ash and this can be used to light a fuse in a highly inflammable dry material. Each component is essential for the creation of fire, and the specific wood types selected correspond to a precise technical characteristic.
For Francesco Faccin, Re-Fire is an attempt to re-synchronize with Man’s most instinctive needs using a contemporary means. Producing an article that will produce fire obliged the designer to repeat the gestures of our ancestors, in this case using sophisticated tools that are readily available to all, such as laser cutting machines, CNC routers etc.
Re-Fire, by Francesco Faccin, Photography by Delfino Sisto Legnani + Studio Faccin