Inspired by his daily experience of life in the Pacific Northwest, artist and designer Greg Klassen (previously) fabricates one-of-a-kind tables featuring blue glass rivers, lakes, and waterfalls. The topographical studies mimic bodies of water seen from an aerial view, but the twisting blue pathways are often defined by the wood pieces he selects. While the majority of Klassen’s work serves as functional art, he’s also begun to create more isolated wood and glass sculptures mounted on walls.
Several of Klassen’s most recent tables are available through his online shop, and you can explore more pieces from the last few years on Instagram and Facebook.
Stretched like a digital glitch, these distorted chairs by Dutch artist Sebastian Brajkovic appear more like a product of Photoshop than a physical object. The Paris-based sculptor has been turning heads (and twisting necks) at art museums and galleries for over a decade with his ongoing Lathe series that imparts elements of the digital world onto classical furniture designs. Brajkovic extrudes the seats, backs, and even the designs printed on them to form wild new chairs with varying degrees of functionality.
Brajkovic’s work is now part of the permanent collections at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the Museum of Arts and Design in New York. You can see more of his recent work on Artsy. (via Visual Fodder)
Seeking a way to reduce waste as part of their industrial design practice, South Korean design studio HATTERN conceived of a hybrid resin and wood seating concept called Zero Per Stool. As part of the construction process the waste offcut from creating the legs are saved and then combined with resin to form the stool’s seat. The resulting objects have almost zero waste and appear visually unique from piece to piece—each stool subtly paying tribute to its own construction process. HATTERN also adopted the same process for a series of resin coasters that make use of scrap wood materials. You can follow more of their recent work on Facebook. (via Design Milk)
Full Grown’s prototype willow chair now in the permanent collection at the National Museum of Scotland.
The most common way of producing wooden furniture is fairly straightforward: grow the proper trees for a few decades, chop ’em down, cut them into smaller pieces and assemble the pieces into a chair. Derbyshire-based furniture designer Gavin Munro wondered if he could try a wholly different approach: what if he could just grow chairs? What if trees could be forced to grow in chair-like shapes and through strategic sculpting and grafting result in an annual “chair harvest.” After a lengthy years-long trial in his mother’s garden and a sturdy proof-of-concept, Full Grown was born.
Munro points out that the idea of growing furniture actually dates back millennia. The Chinese were known to dig holes to fill with chair-shaped rocks and had tree roots grow through the gaps, while the Egyptians and Greeks had a method for growing small stools. But Full Grown appears to be on a scale entirely of its own, with an entire farm destined to be harvested into chairs, assorted light fixtures, and other unusual objects. He shares a bit about the process which can take between 4 to 8 years:
In essence it’s an incredibly simple art. You start by training and pruning young tree branches as they grow over specially made formers. At certain points we then graft them together so that the object grows into one solid piece – I’m interested in the way that this is like an organic 3D printing that uses air, soil and sunshine as its source materials. After it’s grown into the shape we want, we continue to care for and nurture the tree, while it thickens and matures, before harvesting it in the winter and then letting it season and dry. It’s then a matter of planing and finishing to show off the wood and grain inside.
Full Grown’s first prototype willow chair has already found its way into the permanent collection at the National Museum of Scotland, and Munro and his team just launched a Kickstarter to help them bridge the gap in the final year before their first harvest, nearly 11 years in the making. You can learn more on their website.
Although London-based designer Veega Tankun has only just graduated from the University of Brighton, she clearly possesses a strong sense of aesthetic and understanding of materials as evidenced in these comfy looking chairs woven from overstuffed knit tubes. Tankun says that she’s fascinated with rejuvenating old techniques in her design practice, bringing modern materials and color palettes to traditional production methods. “Traditional doesn’t always have to mean old and outdated, the trick is to make something that we know new and exciting again,” she shares.
This chunky chair is just one Tankun’s latest creations, you can explore more of her work on Design Milk and Instagram. Some of her pieces will also be on view at London’s Top Drawer starting next month.
As part of her ongoing series titled My Old New Chair, visual artist Tatiane Freitas repairs broken wood furniture by replacing the missing pieces with translucent acrylic. Much like the Japanese practice of kintsugi or medieval parchment repair, her designs restore functionality to the chairs while acknowledging the history of each piece. One chair from the series was recently included in the Clairvoyance exhibition at Guy Hepner in New York, and you can see more of her latest work on her website and Instagram. (via Dark Silence in Suburbia)
Side note: did you know the country of Sweden offers tax breaks to people who choose to repair household appliances and bicycles instead of throwing them away?