THESE EXQUISITE FURNITURE PIECES SHOWCASE A MODERN TAKE ON TRADITIONAL CRAFTS OR CUSTOMS

The brands are giving a new lease of life to traditional artistry and practices by translating them into spectacular craft-intensive furniturewith universal aesthetics

By Pallavi Mehra

March, 2021

The Soda coffee tables are made from hand-blown Murano glass
Photo Credit-Alessandro di Bon and Laura Pozzi Studio

Over the last few years, we are seeing more and more design brands that are open to experimentation and are conceptualising products that have path-breaking forms. These innovative companies are creating objects, which are imaginative and daring, and question the status quo. Here’s a look at five such groundbreaking products that are truly a refreshing take on home décor and furniture.

The Surface Collection includes 3D renders of 2D hand drawn sketches

Photo Credit-ilsangisang

SURFACE COLLECTION

ilsangisang, a South Korean firm has crafted a range of unique flower vases and stationery holders that are made of three-dimensional linework. Known as the Surface Collection, this new design project includes vases, coffee mugs, teacups and stationary holders that are 3D renders of 2D hand drawn sketches. Jong-su Kim, the founder ofilsangisang, created this quirky home décor series to reinterpret everyday objects in a fun and fascinating manner.

The Surface Collection only features lines made of steel

Photo Credit-ilsangisang

The Surface Collection includes six products, made of black or grey powder-coated steel lines. The forms of the pieces also include the design of the product’s shadow as well as a line, which is meant to exhibit the water or beverage level in the product. "In the Surface Collection, a flat design sketch of 2D was raised in 3D. These distinctive products only feature lines made of steel. I chose steel as the material for this series as it is strong because the product is designed with only lines. An iron plate was cut with a laser and folded to create this collection. Of course, I am faithful to the function and purpose of the product, but I try to look at the product from a different perspective. I enjoy visualising within designing," states designer Jong-su Kim.

The Gorilla Chair with the rest of the Forest Collection and the Illusion Centre Table

GORILLA CHAIR

Scarlet Splendour has collaborated with Italian sculptor and designer Marcantonio to create the one-of-a-kind Gorilla Chair. As the name suggests, the Gorilla Chair is evocative of a great ape. This exotic Indian furniture piece presents an "elegant irony"—a form that is almost a caricature of a gorilla coupled with high-end materials and a carefully curated technique. The Gorilla Chair exhibits a luxurious design aesthetic and is a part of the Forest Collection. The Forest Collection also includes the Dragon Slice Stool, Forest Bench, Forest Chair, Forest Coat Hanger, Forest Dining Table, Forest Mirror, Forest Sofa, Leaf Pouffe, Leaf Rug, Log Stool, Paw Stool and Tree Cabinet.

Gorilla Chair Rust

The eccentric Forest Collection evokes drama, humor and ingenuity through one-of-a-kind designs, tasteful colour palettes and opulent finishes. The materials used to create the Gorilla Chair—wood, foam, leather and nautical resin elevate the product to a sophisticated sculptural furniture piece that tells the story of the special bond between humans and nature. The Gorilla Chair exhibits Scarlet Splendour’s attention to detail, eliciting iconic memories of being one with nature. This imaginative chair is available in five hues—black, teal, green, rust and ivory.

The Furfit furniture collection can be used as at-home gym equipment

Photo Credit-H-O-TT Design Studio

FURFIT

Dutch design firm H-O-TT has conceptualised a collection of living room furniture that transforms into exercise equipment. Known as Furfit, the collection includes five pieces—a coffee table, a coat rack, a side table, a high seat and a pair of stools. Not only is Furfit an aesthetically pleasing range of furniture, but also it can be used as at-home gym equipment."The idea of Furfit came to my partner Saba NabaviTafreshi and I during the first months of the Coronavirus lockdown. Living in a typical Dutch apartment, the space to work out wasn’t generous, so we started to think about a way to upscale our living room and find an active use for the pieces of furniture that were otherwise limiting our movements. The range is a way of transforming limitations into potential, simply achieving more with less," states Luca Beltrame, Co-founder of H-O-TT.

The Idas side table's top can be removed to turn it into a kettlebell

Photo Credit-H-O-TT Design Studio

The Furfit collection features pieces titled Heracles, Paeonaeus, Epimedes, Iasius and Idas. The Heracles coffee table has legs that transform into five pairs of dumbbells, weighing between two and five kilograms. The Iasius high seat doubles up asa curl barbell by turning it on its side. Its wavy handle adds an extra decorative element. The Epimedes coat rack's pegs can be used as a set of light dumbbells varying from 0.5 to two kilograms. The Idas side table's top can be removed to turn it into a kettle bell. Lastly, the Paeonaeus set of stools can be laid flat on the floor to be used as push-up bars.Currently, the Furfitrange is entirely conceptual. The design firm is hopeful to find a manufacturing partner with the aim of unveiling the range at Milan design week next year.

The Design by Nature furniture collection is suggestive of objects coated with moss, lichen and algae

Photo Credit-Andy Liffner

DESIGN BY NATURE

Swedish design studio Front founded by Anna Lindgren and Sofia Lagerkvisthas partnered with Italian firm Moroso to launch a series of distinctive furniture pieces that are suggestive of objects covered with moss, lichen and algae. The Design by Nature collection was made using 3D-scanning technologies and includes six wooden seating units. Although these furniture pieces are seats, they were crafted to motivate people to climb on top of or lay down on them like “the way one sits in nature.”For four years, extensive research was undertaken to craft this unique range of furniture. The aim of the series is to help people connect with nature, even in their homes.

The Design by Nature collection was made using 3D-scanning technologies

Photo Credit-Andy Liffner

“We wanted the pieces to create the feeling that someone had lifted a whole glade from a forest with a gigantic shovel and moved it to a home. The pieces try to recreate the feeling of sitting out in a forest on the mossy ground, on a cliff by a lake, or of sinking into a snowdrift. These are all experiences that many can relate to,” remarksSofia Lagerkvist, Founder of design studio Front.

The No Vase collection is a range of three sleek stands that each hold a single flower stem

Photo Credit-Moisés Hernández

NO VASE COLLECTION

Mexican product designer Moisés Hernández has unveiled a range of unorthodox metal flower stands. Titled the No Vase collection, this series comprises three sleek stands that can be used to hold a single stem of a flower. With this minimal series of vases, Hernández’s goal is to shine the spotlight on the beauty ofthe flowers that are being showcased.The stands are made of metal, which was cut into various forms to give them a compact and sleek appearance. The No Vase collection includes a stainless steel circle, a brass hexagon and a copper rectangle stand. Each piece is meant to hold only one flower or twig, highlighting its distinctiveness.

The No Vase collection’s goal is shine the spotlight on the beauty of flowers

Photo Credit-Moisés Hernández

“What if we enhance a flower by disappearing its vase? In Mexico City, we live in a chaotic and saturated order, where it is normal to be surrounded by many elements, colours and textures. Hence, what if we create a different perception, where an object seems non-existent but fulfills its function, containing different types of flowers and each one creates an organic and unique effect, depending on how it stands, its petals, colour or shape,” concludes designer Moisés Hernández.