From ombré bookshelves with moving components to geometric outdoor shading and light fixtures made of Velcro, designers at this year’s International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) showcased plenty of eye-catching and innovative layouts. While their creations may not make it to the local retailer in the near future, these designers are worth keeping an eye on.
Would you tell what’s at first glance? Figuring out that these colorful and ombré wooden pieces would be the Korean company Walltech’s take on the modern bookshelf.
The bookshelves are made of fundamental wire grids, supported by a steel framework. Colorful painted wooden pegs are placed in every square and may be removed or corrected as needed to make the desired amount of shelving.
2. California College of the Arts and Wilsonart
California College of the Arts (CCA) students worked with Wilsonart to make unique chairs from Wilsonart laminate, inspired by California. Student Kaii Tu’s Torrey seat was inspired by the shapes of this windswept pines on the California coast. And Tu created this shape using computer-aided layout — a tribute to Silicon Valley.
CCA pupil Jeni Tu’s Linea seat takes its bold shape and color from the Los Angeles landscape. The curving shape echoes the endless overpasses and iconic architecture of that city, although the red is a clever nod to the always-present red taillights on the freeway.
Argentina company Weplight revealed a new assortment of stunning wooden lighting. Its designers have worked together with the company’s own flexible timber veneer since 2001, allowing them to produce these elegantly curved fixtures.
4. Christopher Roy, Why Not Bespoke
Christopher Roy’s Why Not Bespoke line has roots in traditional Amish furniture. Inspired by the utilitarian designs of those pieces, Roy works with Amish craftspeople to acquire the shapes, pieces and forms for his more modern pieces.
5. Eastvold Furniture
Custom choices for handmade pieces were plentiful at the ICFF this year. Eastvold Furniture in Minnesota offered the opportunity to choose the inside and leg colors of this new credenza.
Eastvold’s Elko Credenza is made of walnut, white oak or bamboo and comes with six base color choices.
6. Pratt Institute and Carnegie Fabrics
Pupils from the Pratt Institute worked with Carnegie’s new Xorel woven fabrics to design an intricate, hand-folded structure. The piece is created completely from squares of Xorel, folded in precisely the same pattern to make a three-dimensional geometric shape. Each bit is shaded blue in the middle, just barely visible from the interior.
7. Symbol Audio
Symbol Audio made its debut at the ICFF this year. Its stunning pieces possess a timeless but modern look that has captured the hearts of audiophiles and layout lovers alike. The Modern Record Console has all of the classic style of a midcentury hi-fi games together with all the comforts of the 21st century. A built-in turntable; a converter for iPod, iPhone, or iPad; and an incredible sound system are housed within this hand-crafted bamboo and walnut bit.
The Tabletop Hifi is a more accessible piece from Symbol Audio that delivers the same high-quality layout, and it’s offered in a variety of shades and finishes. A conventional speaker design allows it to provide an incredible level of audio for such a small bit. Cables from the back make it effortless to hook up to a beloved electronic or analog device.
8. Rachel O’Neill
These wild light fixtures look as though they’re made of piles of folded ribbon, but Northern Irish designer Rachel O’Neill accomplishes this look with yards and yards of Velcro. The Velcro is hand dyed, carefully folded and put around an aluminum framework to make these daring bursts of light.
Humanscale is known primarily for its revolutionary office furniture but wished to present a more playful side of the business at its ICFF stall this year. Emphasizing the technology side of its goods, it generated a new wireless light system. The tasteful rings light up when they are hanging from the brass wall hooks but turn off as soon as they are removed.
10. Iacoli & McAllister
Well known for its simple but daring lighting, Iacoli & McAllister brought several new fixtures to the ICFF this year, such as the Cinque. Shown in brass, this pendant plays with light and shadow within an eye-catching geometric form.
Several new objects debuted at the ICFF as well. This table displays just a few, such as hexagon-shape paperweights, a brass sage-burning pyramid and hexagonal jar openers.
Watch more reports in the ICFF 2012