A New Furniture Collection Highlights the Color-Shifting Magic of Car Paint

In a narrow white space at A Plus A Gallery in Venice, Italy, brass furniture, neon lights, glass objects, and colorful rugs have come together in the spirit of the body and soul. Called “The House Electric,” the exhibition is inspired by a Walt Whitman poem — “I sing the body electric,” from the 1855 edition of “Leaves of Grass” — and brings together artists and designers Richard Wheater, Jochen Holz, and M–L–XL in conjunction with this summer’s architecture biennale. Wheater’s neon installations show off light and shapes as much as the cords and electricity themselves; Holz’s neon lights and glass objects are wild and free, with bulges and tubes composing cartoon-like moments. But the real star here is M-L-XL’s new furniture collection, inspired by everyday extruded metal L-profiles. “The starting point of the research was the willingness to use a common, everyday material to question the meaning of ‘experimentation,’ which is often emphasized in today’s design practice,” the designers explain. “Through different combinations, this standardized extrusion is turned into a structural element, forming ‘invisible,’ yet aesthetically revealing, joints. Rather than being made of aluminum, however, the furniture is made of brass, transforming an ordinary, mass-produced element into a sophisticated, bespoke item.”

In the exhibition, the furniture’s structural and aesthetic qualities weave in and out of each other, all shininess and weirdness, wires and joints. Painted with holographic car paint, the chairs and table appear to be several colors at once, with nothing obscured, yet everything balanced. On view until August 11.