Kwangho Lee at Design Miami/Basel 2018

Kwangho Lee On Using a 15th-Century Technique To Make Today’s Coolest Furniture

At Design Miami/Basel this week, Korean designer Kwangho Lee is presenting his latest work with the New York gallery Salon 94 Design — a 25-piece offering, spanning seating, side tables, cabinets, lamps, and planters, that continues Lee’s career-long quest to resuscitate enamel’s old-fashioned image. “Korean people aren’t very interested in it as a traditional material,” he explains of his longtime technique, chilbo, which dates back to the 15th century. “They think it’s something boring and old-fashioned.”
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Muji Materials Garden by Ladies & Gentlemen

Ladies & Gentlemen’s MUJI Materials Garden Was a Match Made in Minimalist Heaven

For this year’s NYCxDESIGN, MUJI teamed up with Jean Lee and Dylan Davis of Ladies & Gentlemen Studio on an installation to commemorate the Japanese lifestyle brand's ten years in the U.S. — the brand’s first-ever collaboration with an American designer. Called MUJI Materials Garden, the installation was comprised of seven vignettes showcasing MUJI collection mainstays alongside the materials from which they’re made.
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The Best Thing We Saw in Milan Today, Day 3

In the 5Vie district, in an old flat that's been used for a couple of years as an exhibition space, we found the show Unsighted, curated by our friend Nicolas Bellevance-LeCompte of Carwan Gallery. For the brief he asked eight designers to create a collection not knowing who, what, or where it was bound for; our favorite of the collections was by a young designer named Roberto Sironi, who created Ruins, a series of benches, stools, mirrors and tables that juxtapose elements of the classical and industrial eras.
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Fiberglass, Corian, Rubber, and Resin: Welcome to the Materials-Obsessed World of Wentrcek/Zebulon

Brooklyn design duo Kristen Wentrcek and Andrew Zebulon began making work together six years ago as Wintercheck Factory. And while their moniker has recently changed, their work has always derived its impact from the tension between the what and the why — the “what” being a material language that enforces approachability, and the “why” embedded in how it all comes together to elevate the mundane.
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VI, VII_Exhibition view_Eva LeWitt at VI, VII_10 Courtesy of VI, VII, Oslo_Photography by Christian Tungeopener

In a New Exhibition in Oslo, Eva LeWitt (Yep, That’s Sol’s Daughter) Comes Into Her Own

It can be difficult to approach the work of New York artist Eva LeWitt and not immediately attempt to place it in context with the work of her father, the late, great conceptual artist Sol LeWitt. So it makes sense that LeWitt, for her new exhibition at VI, VII Gallery in Oslo, might try to escape comparison entirely by using materials in such an opaque way that they reframe your initial appraisal of the work — you first must understand what exactly it is you're looking at.
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Note Design Studio Stockholm Furniture Fair

The Coolest Booth in Stockholm Was for a Vinyl Flooring Company

While it's not exactly news that formerly uncool materials can be made to look beautiful and sophisticated, it's perhaps never been done as well or on as large a scale as it was this week at the Stockholm Furniture Fair, in a booth Note Design Studio created for the French flooring company Tarkett. Called the Lookout, the booth was made from a mix of wood, textiles, linoleum and a vinyl flooring material called iQ Megalit; the trick was in employing Note's frequent use of geometry and a tight, tonal color palette of rust, coral, apricot, moss green, and mint.
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Up and coming Swiss designer Dimitri Bähler

This Swiss Designer Blends the Rational With the Emotional to Create Some of the Most Beautiful Objects We’ve Seen

"When I started at ECAL at age 18, I actually didn’t know much about design," admits Dimitri Bähler. "As a kid, I was more interested in music, fashion, and illustration, along with biology and chemistry. In fact, I've always combined those two poles of interests: the rational and the emotional." That seems as good a way as any to describe Bähler, a young Swiss designer whose work has always seemed the result of both meticulous planning and wild experimentation. In many of his pieces, a relatively strict basic form is married to a more complex and renegade surface treatment.
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This Up-And-Coming Italian Designer is A Master of Materials

Looking like glossy collages left too long in the sun, Strata — a collection of glass plates and lamps by Venetian designer Lucia Massari for Swing Design Gallery — are vibrant, delicate, and weirdly fun. Massari fuses differently colored flat sheets of glass in an oven, and the results teeter between two and three dimensions. Sticking with a few neutrals and a pop of color or two — yellows, violets, and blues — the casual overlapping of smooth ovals, chunky grids, and basic rectangles create unexpected, but harmonious, geometric textures.
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The 40+ Biggest Breakout Talents at Dutch Design Week 2017

When we first covered Dutch Design Week back in 2012, arts funding in the Netherlands had been slashed and the Design Academy Eindhoven had gone through a major directorial shake-up, making us worry that the halcyon days of Dutch design might be nearing an end. Five years later, though, we're happy to report that no such thing has occurred. Have a look at this year's Dutch Design Week mega-roundup to see what we mean.
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This Dutch Designer is Giving Concrete a Serious Makeover

At this point, we've seen pretty much every formerly humdrum thing in the universe get a design-forward makeover, from watering cans to luggage. But Dutch designer Iwan Pol wasn't happy to simply renovate a product category — he wanted to recast an entire architectural material. "Concrete can take any shape or form, so why not aim for a softer look and feel?" he says.
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Dutch Design Week 2017 - Hardcore Exhibition

At Dutch Design Week, 17 Designers Turning Everyday Materials into Sculptural Furniture

It’s Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven, and we'll be publishing a round-up of our favorites first thing next week. But for the second year in a row, one of the best exhibitions on view came from the young trend-forecasting and design firm Core Studio, who last year curated the colorful exhibition Popcore. This year, the theme was HARDCORE, and the curators asked participating designers to create works exploring "a counter-digital movement."
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Albers-Inspired Tableware in Glass and Acrylic, On View in New York

If you happened to have stopped by Canal Street Market during New York Design Week last spring, you might have noticed a series of objects and furniture pieces united in their fascination with materiality: low tables made from planes of marble slotted into translucent acrylic tops, copper mirrors backed by slices of aerated concrete, and curved side tables made from various colors of stone. These objects were the first inkling of a full collection that's debuting next week at Matter by Objects of Common Interest.
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