Sixties is a table lamp designed by the Russian industrial designer Maxim Maximov. As its own name indicates, the lamp has been inspired by the designers of the 1960s, particularly the works of Dieter Rams, as well as displaying a strong resemblance to a pipe or a bendy straw. The design is very simple and has no unnecessary details, but at the same time the result is very useful because with its adjustable neck you can direct the light where you need it. The Sixties lamp has been made in plastic and is available in a variety of colours.
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Cathérine Lovatt is a Belgian freelance ceramicist who’s portfolio of ceramic works has found me hugely impressed, particularly because of their minimalist aesthetic. Lovatt has designed for the likes of Serax, Domani and Belgoflor, and it is this beautiful collection of ceramic crockery for the Belgian company Serax, that I would like to share with you. Family Set, which includes plates, bowls, beakers, carafe and teapot, are made in stoneware clay consisting of six different basic forms based on the cylinder. Each piece from the collection is available for purchase through the Gosto online store. The teapot would make for a particularly good Christmas gift, in my opinion. Superb.
The Fuji vase has been designed by Netherlands based studio toer for Belgian brand Serax. The piece is only seven centimeters high, yet, thanks to its low center of mass and relatively wide ground surface, it can easily hold a flower up to one meter high. Here is how designers explain their concept: The Fuji vase puts the focus on the flower itself. The porcelain vase serves as a steady base from which the flower can flourish. It draws the attention to the flower’s ability to delicately grow towards the sun. I love the subtle humour of the piece. Named after the highest mountain in Japan, the vase is intentionally tiny comparing to the flower it supports. I also quite like the fact that this shape allows displaying flowers diagonally and thus creating many different effects. The Fuji vase is made of porcelain and comes in six different colours.
Donna Bates’ rural Irish background has highly influenced her first lighting collection, Parlour Lighting. The series was inspired by her early years growing up on a farmyard where the lighting vessels themselves echo glass vats found in a milking parlour. Launched at the Clerkenwell Design Week in May 2013 in London, the collection is a series of six differing shapes and lighting sizes. The Parlour Lighting collection of vessels takes inspiration from the milking parlour and the receiving, which were used to collect the milk from the cows. The collection comprises options of colours and finishes; black, green or blue frames and oak or walnut-turned bases. Bates has made a considered effort to engage local craftspeople, where the pieces are hand-blown by the same manufacturers that used to create the jars for the dairy industry. The designer feels passionate about design, but equally so about supporting local hand skilled makers. The reference is one of considered nostalgia, trending with current design and the consideration of re-use. While referencing local ways of life, past and present, the aesthetic has a warmth and familiarity. The combination of clear and frosted glass elements, together with the discreet bulb selection, all enhance the warmth...
Toronto based visual artist, Kal Mansur, specialises in solid acrylic sculpture. It is Mansur’s minimalist styled Pixels collection that I am delighted to share with you today. The Pixels bring to mind scaled-down architectural models. Empty spaces, walls and blocks are suggested, subtly visible through the semi-opaque acrylic. There is no point of entry, sealed completely on all six sides. The viewer gets just a hint of the interior as available light creates shadows, exposing voids. Created in 2010 and 2011, each piece is made up of solid acrylic, beautifully hand carved, featuring straight painted lines. All measuring 16 x 16 x 3 inches, it is certainly the dark canvas sculptures that I find most striking, particularly that entitled, Secrets.
Australian born visual artist, George Papadimas, currently based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, has a staggeringly impressive body of work including geometric forms and colour, and so today I am featuring a collection of his enamel on stainless steel minimalist sculptures. Each sculpture is a distortion of a cube comprised of stainless steel rods coated in black enamel. These art works, created in 2010, are perhaps Papadimas’s most striking sculptures, though many of them could certainly be defined as deceptively minimalist. I’ll undoubtedly be keeping an eye out for future exhibitions. Wonderful work.
Tea Egg is a new tea infuser developed by the Denmark-based design Studio Made by Makers for the great Danish design company Normann Copenhagen. The design of the Tea Egg comprises two pieces of silicone that are easy to clean, and is available in a range of six different colors: grey, black, blue, mint, rose and pink. It really has a simple design mixed with good functionality that results in a minimally attractive and useful product. To the tea drinkers in particular, what do you think?
Nocturnes is a unique box set of six books with silkscreened covers in a slipcase by the new photography group AM projects and published by dienacht Publishing. It is the first AM project and explores six different photographic journeys into the night. This idiomatic object is published with varying papers – depending on the artist – one even has an enormous fold-out poster. All come originally fused together spinally and will be presented as a box set. It is a landmark – in terms of design and printing (as well as in terms of photographic content) – in photo book publishing. The impressive minimalist design of this box set was produced by German graphics design studio, Fluut. I’d really like to get my hands on copies of these books. Beautiful work.
Baooab is a children’s toy designed by Sergio Guijarro and Miriam Tochijara. This simple toy is designed to encourage imaginative and creative playtime. According to Guijarro: A child’s power of imaginations has no limits. Baooab is a new game concept which combines construction, creativity and interaction with all the elements of play. Six pieces, infinite possibilities, offering a form of entertainment wich returns to the sensory, emotional, and, above all, to the appreciation of ingenuity. I love how the simple wooden shapes can change and adapt during play. Check out this video to see Baooab in action. Baooab can become an infinite number of creatures: a turtle, giraffe, or sea monster! Or maybe this toy is train, a swirling river, or a patch of flowers. And because it is based on creativity, this toy can be enjoyed by all ages. Anything is possible with Baooab. All you need is your imagination.
Hungarian born Akos Major, currently residing in Vienna, is a freelance graphic designer and amateur photographer. However, there is nothing amateur about this stunning photographic series entitled Lumen. Although I’m perfectly aware the summer time season is upon us, I was not prepared to wait a further six months before featuring this beautifully minimal winter series. Major looks to capture and display the spiritual and emotive textures that he sees in muted and often monotone landscapes across northern Europe. Although I feel Lumen is a wonderful representation of Major’s photography work, his exemplary portfolio will surely not disappoint. What do you think?
These wooden spectacle frames are the result of a collaboration between Milan-based designer Matteo Ragni and wood-enthusiast Doriano Mattellone of the MA-wood research laboratory. The glasses are called W-eye, and are made from layers of wood which have been coated with aluminum. This mixture allows the wood durability and flexibility, and makes for surprisingly lightweight frames. The glasses are also hinge-free, with no hardware to interrupt the flow of sensuous wood. The glasses come in a variety of styles and are available in six different shades of wood: ebony, zebrano, mahogany, cherry, ash and walnut. Each pair of glasses is hand-crafted and guaranteed to sit evenly on the face, ensuring perfect vision. It is the lack of hardware and integrity of material which attracted me to these glasses. The lack of hardware gives the frames a simple elegance; they look as if they have been effortlessly carved from a single piece of wood. The wood -the mahogany is my favorite- looks incredibly luxurious compared to the materials traditionally used in eyeglass design. W-eye pushes the boundaries of eyeglass design to give us a product that is both stylish and well-crafted.
This house in Hiroshima, Japan was designed by Suppose Design Office. The house experiments with the boundaries of inside and outside; some of the rooms are inclosed, while others act as “garden rooms” and are exposed to the elements. The design allows the inhabitants to experience interior and exterior as a continuous flow of space, blurring the traditional distinctions between the two. Two children’s bedrooms and the master bedroom are on the main floor, along with three garden spaces which are accessible from each room. The second floor holds the living spaces and looks down into the gardens on the lower level. The house is quite small, only six rooms in total. Nonetheless, it serves as an elegant living space for this young family. I am a huge fan of the layout of the rooms and the materials. The staggering of the garden spaces with the interior spaces gives the house an airy feel and allows for tons of natural light. The lightness of the gardens is contrasted with the heavy concrete walls, which have been left bare to preserve the integrity of the material. This is a house full of opposites: heavy and light, inside and outside, wide and narrow....