Minimalissimo


Categorized “Shelf”

Berlin based Björn Meier created a minimalist, light, modular shelf-system named Dike. Dike is composed of several components, each made of a coated top and bottom shelf, two side elements of acrylic glass. The rear and blind are made of aluminum. The system invites you to make your own composition. The open transparent shelves encourage us to store beautiful and well crafted objects though. Else it is hard to keep the clean, uncluttered appearance. Meier founded his Berlin Product Design Studio in 2007, after his graduation in product design from the University of the Arts Bremen in 2006. Photography by Axel Köhler


Clopen is a simple little floating shelf with the neat storage compartment. Creative minds at Torafu Architects envisioned it looking like a solid wooden piece. The illusion breaks when the face panel slides open, revealing a hidden storage area. Designers explain: This shelf panel is constructed from elaborate aluminum parts, and at 34mm thick, it looks as if it’s made of natural wood. Attaching sliced veneer to a thin structure, we made space between two boards which can be opened using magnetic keys. You will not get a lot of storage capacity from this shelf, but it will give you enough space for some jewelry, documents and other valuables. Also – an ultimate secret stash item! Photography by Yosuke Owashi


Looking for a flexible and light structured shelving system? Do not look further. I would like to share Meccanica, a great minimalist shelving system by Demode, engineered by Valcucine, with you. The base unit frames of Meccanica are made of iron with a electrophoresis coating, connected together by using mechanical joints. The framework can be easily assembled by the end user and can be recomposed and customized extremely. All door types – wood, metal or covered with removable fabric – can be customized in various colors. On request one can also have the frames lacquered in a personal preferred color. “We can not longer continue to produce without worrying about the goods that will accumulate in the environment tomorrow” says Valcucine so at the end of it’s life-cycle Meccanica is easy to disassembled and can be 100% recycled or reconditioned by 90%. The use cases for Meccanica are endless, where would you use Meccanica for?


As a fan of New York-based practice Snarkitecture ever since their collaboration with fashion designer Richard Chai, I have been looking forward to their new installation in Chicago’s Volume Gallery, a series of everyday objects ‘confused’ in their original function, typical context and familiar materials, producing a collection of Fun. A lamp whose globe melts away from leaning onto another lamp. A coffee table frozen in collapse under the weight of a marble that ‘pours’ its heaviness out. These objects are kept in minimal colors and forms to convey the artists’ intention. Funiture reconsiders our reality, often centering on creating confusion – whether with familiar objects in unexpected contexts, or the dissolution of recognizable volumes into irrational forms. Snarkitecture, comprising of Alex Mustonen and Daniel Asham, has often brought the fields of topography and geography into a smaller, human scale. Shelves, smooth on the top surface to function as, well, shelves, are made out of fiberglass and wood while they resemble rock excavations on the underside. Consistent in their philosophy of making architectural sense in their work, what I like most about the collection is that it serves its purpose by reminding us that sometimes it is ok not to take architecture...


Osko+Deichmann, the product design studio founded by Blasius Osko and Oliver Deichmann, created a minimalist family of tubular steel furniture named “KINK”. While normally tubing used in furniture is bent the Berlin design duo rather functionally folded, dented and kinked the tubes in their furniture pieces. The traces that come with the steel process are now integral to the furniture’s design. The family consists of a table, chair, writing table, cantilever chair, sideboard, shelf, coffee table and floor lamp made exclusively of tubular steel, pine wood and clamps.


I love the simplicity of Revolver – a display and storage system based on a reversible shelf design. Revolver is made by the London based design studio Henny van Nistelrooy. Van Nistelrooy, 1979 – The Netherlands, founded his studio after his graduation in 2007. Revolver was developed as part of the retail design commission for Velorution – a London based bicycle store. The shelving system is very flexible and perfect to exhibit objects and garments. The combination of the wood (Douglas fir) and powder coated sheet metal works fine and give the system a subtle elegance. One can easily adjust the system by hooking one shelf above the other.


Beautiful and minimal shelf system developed by artist Liam Gillick. Throughout modern history, artists and architects have created their own furniture, or appropriated industrial objects, to satisfy their own needs and to demonstrate their vision for an improved way of life. The work of Liam Gillick breaks through the genre- and media-specific boundaries of the visual arts. He undertakes architectural and structural, spatial interventions as well as creates minimalist objects. Shelf System A is made of six powder-coated aluminum elements to be mounted onto the wall, three different color combinations. Produced by Schellmann Studio, limited to an edition of 100.


QueB is the first furniture piece from the young Belgian design collective FARZ, consisting of Anton Boel, Bart Houben and Pieter Neyens. The simplicity in the design of QueB is strongly reflected in the material – one steel rail and three steel cubes. Simplicity is also found in its flexibility. The boxes can be easily positioned in multiple ways depending on one’s own preference or mood. The rail is tied to the wall in such a way that the screws are invisible, introducing a minimalist aesthetic to the design. For me, the most successful aspect to this rack is the continual visual interest it can create from one moment to the next by making slight adjustments to the box positions.


Distinguished Japanese design agency Nendo have created the Dancing Squares collection consisting of a series of minimalist furniture pieces based on the concept of motion. Nendo describes some of the designs: One part of the bookshelf is frozen in a tumbling cascade, creating variety in the way books can be stacked. The stool’s twist endows it with rich visual play. Lamps roll about but are stable, thanks to their planes, and cast light in many directions. The table leans as though falling away, but maintains its function as a table, and makes objects placed on it seem to sink into its folds and sways. The sense of motion, or rather dance is achieved through the clever positioning of the planes, resulting in a combating balance. My personal favourite would have to be the square open basket. Nendo have also recently introduced the Dancing Squares collection to the NTCRI exhibition in Taiwan as a combination piece.


A beautiful, simple idea, executed with so much care: Shelframe, by London-based designer Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad. He writes: The shelves are designed to occupy a space normally reserved for a framed picture or painting, and they act so as to frame compositions of everyday objects. Please note how the cable starts in the center of the sides, to avoid tilting. And those little balls at the end of the cables… The whole design speaks purity and care. I like that very much.


In 1960, when he was just 28, Dieter Rams designed the 606 Universal Shelving System for Vitsoe. Their New York store is currently celebrating its 50th anniversary in the form of an exhibition called 60s 606 is 50. In Dwell’s interview with Dieter Rams and Vitsoe’s managing director Mark Adams, Rams described the product by saying: Never forget that a good product should be like a good English butler. They’re there for you when you need them, but in the background at all other times. Besides a few millionaires in London, most of us don’t have butlers. The butlers of today are our products and our furniture.


French architect Jean Nouvel’s Hook wall is a minimalist storage surface. It is also a new and interesting way to animate home or office walls. Nouvel had been inspired by computer punch cards and sheet music staves when he designed this wall system for Italian brand Methis. The system comprises metal strips with hidden joints, shelves and containers can be hung from gaps between the strips. Jean Nouvel says: A metal architecture, like a quotation from Jean Prouvé’s work: rather than a wall this is a continuous building system that encloses joints into the metal folds. And its corrugated skin, regularly perforated and lacquered, turns into a wall. A wall to capture light and liven up the space around it. I love it as the wall turns into a complete device with infinite potential…