Sneak Peek at the 2012 Noho Design District

If we’ve been quiet this week, it’s because — as usual — we’re up to something big, something outside the realm of the digital. In this case, that something is the 2012 Noho Design District, taking place in New York’s Noho neighborhood in just two short weeks, from May 18 to 21. We founded the NDD three years ago to ensure that there would always be a place for the kind of design we love during New York Design Week — independent talents, innovative brands, and an emphasis on the creative, not just the commercial — and our efforts have only grown since then. With the help of the local organization Noho-Bowery Stakeholders, this year’s show promises more locations than ever, including two new brand new hubs: the former photo studio at 22 Bond, and the Standard, East Village hotel, where Sonos will help us host a series of exhibitions that includes a showcase of California design curated by your faithful editors. Other exciting developments: The new city-wide design-week coalition we’re a part of (check out the DesignweekNYC.org site for details), and a shuttle that will be looping around town to all the hotspots during ICFF, including Noho. There’s still a lot left to be done before then, but we wanted to take a moment to give you a sneak peek of what’s in progress; the process images below were submitted by some of the designers whose work you’ll see on view at the Noho Design District. We can’t wait to show you the final results.

Jen Turner — Noho Next

This year’s Noho Next showcase of up-and-coming design talents was curated in partnership with the American Design Club — Sight Unseen invited its members to submit proposals for storefront windows in Noho, and then picked our favorite ideas. One of them was Jen Turner’s; she’ll debut a bar and a record cabinet with legs painted in pastel colors inspired by Le Corbusier. Above and top, the first paint trials for those bases.

Ladies & Gentlemen Studio — Natural Selection
Seattle newcomers Ladies & Gentlemen studio will debut three new pieces in the Zero + Maria Cornejo shop on Bleecker Street: a trio of metallic hanging lamps, and two laid-back sling chairs created with the help of textile artist Ashley Helvey. The series, say the duo, “explores the relationship between the natural and the man-made through basic materials and forms.”

Fort Standard — Bec Brittain + Fort Standard
Fort Standard are scaling up for 2012 — their side tables giving way to dining tables with massive turned legs (pictured in progress above) and table lamps morphing into floor lamps and mobile-like hanging lights with elements of bentwood, glass, and stone. During the NDD, the duo will join forces with Bec Brittain on both an exhibition and a top-secret collaborative piece, all of which will be on view inside the beautifully raw building at 22 Bond.

Makers & Brothers — MAKING01
It’s somewhat antithetical to show process shots from MAKING 01, the live stool-carving event that Irish design brand Makers & Brothers will put on as part of the Sonos-sponsored Standard, East Village hotel showcase during the NDD. The performance will happen entirely on-site for showgoers and passersby to watch, and yet Jonathan from Makers & Brothers was able to offer us these telling teaser images: “I was up the mountains in the shed of James, our stool-maker, recently — wood shavings everywhere,” he reports.

Iacoli & McAllister with Caitlin Mociun — Noho Next
Another stop on the window tour that is Noho Next this year will be the downtown fashion mecca Oak, where AmDC members Iacoli & McAllister will team up with the fashion-world talent Caitlin Mociun to produce a series of tables topped with Mociun’s signature plaster shapes cast from foam, cardboard boxes, and other utilitarian containers. Iacoli & McAllister will also unveil a series of lights for Oak, whose retail fixtures they designed last year — the lights being the finishing touch.

Atelier de Troupe — Hotel California

Close to Jill and I’s hearts this year is the cheekily named exhibition Hotel California, for which we invited our favorite Cali-based designers and artists to transport some of their latest pieces eastward, to New York, and then eastward even further, to the Standard, East Village hotel. Curated by us with the help of Brooks Hudson Thomas, the man behind Specific Merchandise and other impeccably curated west-coast endeavors, the show will feature furniture suitable for both indoors and out, plus a ceramics installation by Ian McDonald and a special section of small objects and objets d’art. Among the outdoor furniture will be a camping-inspired series by Gabriel Abraham of Atelier De Troupe, including a lantern whose final form is hinted at above.

To read more about all of the events happening this year during the Noho Design District, visit the official Noho Design District events page, which will be updated with even more entries in the next few days. We’ll also post the final district events map, in PDF form, early next week. Hope to see you there!

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