Week of December 11, 2023
A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: Two outstanding installations in LA — a gingerbread replica of Flamingo Estate in collaboration with Mytheresa, and a public viewing of the famed 1987 amusement park Luna Luna with installations by the likes of Keith Haring and Salvador Dalí — plus the High Tech incense burner of our dreams.
Sattio Studio, which works with craftspeople in France to create limited edition furniture, recently released their TT1 collection, a play of geometric planes and forms, which includes a lacquered console table, lamp, bench, desk, and sideboard in combinations of cream and butter yellow, mint and sage green, or pink and red. Available at Kolkhoze gallery in Paris.
The latest collection from Barcelona-based Elena Ferrer’s ACTOS, Enjoy the Now, is a bright and cheery series of ceramic tableware, vases, and candleholders. These are handmade objects that encourage you to be present with them, to go ahead and plate that delicious piece of cake and savor it.
The Melbourne-based branding studio A Friend of Mine recently debuted their new studio space, and it’s hitting the trends in a nicely subtle way — an oxblood pedestal table, stainless-steel cabinetry in the kitchen, and giant metallic silver curtain that separates back of house from the more communal and public areas. We especially love the mismatched chairs, including the Gehry Wiggle stool! Photos © Shelley Horan
Ripping: as a concept, it offers up a number of directions and meanings and it’s proven to be highly generative for Dutch designer Willem van Hooff. In literal and figurative senses, van Hooff has applied the idea to different materials: catalpa wood harvested from fallen trees in Eindhoven, and aluminum and powder-coated steel. Surprising, slightly askew proportions and rough edges characterize the wooden series – a lounge chair, tables, cabinet, counter, and columns — while the metal works use laser cutting to create organic forms that mix with angular shapes in wall cabinets, stackable crates, stools, lockers, and benches.
With his latest collection, Untitled, Brazilian furniture designer Gilherme Wentz goes for the improvisational simplicity of a rustic cabin – if it were dreamed up by someone with a highly refined style and sensibility. Untitled consists of 10 pieces, including dining, coffee, and side tables, chairs, a sofa of foam, folded fabric and ribbon, a coatrack, and blankets. It’s a back-to-basics move, but using technologically-enhanced fabrics and material approaches to increase sustainability.
After running a 20th-century design gallery, self-taught Belgian artist Thomas Serruys established his own studio in 2016 in Bruges, focusing on furniture and using materials like pine and metal. These galvanized steel coffee tables with rough cut tops and forged legs will be available in 2024. It’s a duo that works beautifully together or apart.
Brooklyn-based fine jeweler Bernard James recently launched a small-goods capsule collection called The Process of Living using components by USM Modular Furniture. All black, chrome, smoked glass, and industrial energy, the collection consists of a jewelry box, valet trays, and incense holders — all featuring USM’s signature ball joints. Our favorite piece is probably the larger incense burner, which looks like a sexy coffee table in miniature.
Duality of Matter is the latest collection of seating from Lisbon-based studio THER, the joint project of ceramicist Natasza Grzeskiewicz and woodworker Tomás Fernandes. Made of clays and woods (chestnut and acacia) sourced from the Iberian peninsula, this texture-rich furniture honors the duality of its name: wood pieces are angular yet somehow softened, while the clay pieces, like the Rill Stool in black or natural stoneware, have a hard yet beautifully smushed quality.
By now you may have heard the fantastical tale of Luna Luna, the 1987 amusement park with rides and elements created by 35 of the world’s most famous artists — among them Salvador Dali, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Sonia Delaunay, David Hockney, Keith Haring, and Roy Lichtenstein. Artist Andre Heller created it back in 1987 with a $350,000 grant, but it was only shown to the public for seven weeks, in Hamburg, Germany, before being tied up in litigation and languishing in storage for 35 years. The park was in the news last year after Drake bought the storage containers it was languishing in, sight unseen, for $100 million; last week about half of its attractions, fully restored, finally returned to public view in a massive exhibition inside a Los Angeles warehouse. You can marvel at the rides, but not ride them, and yet it’s still worth the price of a ticket to see its unusual masterpieces up close, from Dali’s mirrored pavilion to Hockney’s merry-go-round to Lichtenstein’s hall of mirrors. There’s original merch for sale, too, both at the show and on its website — posters and t-shirts all perfectly preserved inside the containers, crazy enough.
Parisian designer and artist Elizabeth Garouste – who collaborated with Mattia Bonetti in the ’80s on some now iconic furniture – will have soon have a series of new work on display at Ketabi Bourdet gallery in Paris. Escapades, featuring her personality-infused objects, which often hum with surrealist touches, opens January 18th.
Exploring hybridity – between digital and analog, natural and manmade, private and public – the latest exhibition at Copenhagen’s Etage Projects, Hybrid Habitability, features pieces by Lab La Bla, Pegasus Product, Soft Baroque, Uffe Isolotto, Kueng Caputo, Alex Mueller, Nuri Koerfer, Anais Borie, Tina Roeder, Lizzy Ellbruek, Arnaud Eubelen, Koos Breen, and BNAG. The group show of sculpture, installation, and interactive works is up through January 20th.
Gingerbread, but make it fashion and make it shoppable? That’s just what luxury online retailer Mytheresa and lifestyle brand Flamingo Estate have done this month with their pop-up Holiday House in Highland Park. The life-size replica of Flamingo Estate, rendered in cookie form(!), has a bonus “dream closet” featuring clothes – that resemble cutouts for paper dolls – and accessories available via a QR code on MyTheresa. See it through December 24th.
Los Angeles interior design studio Wall for Apricots recently transformed a new-build, white box of a house in Hollywood into a peaceful retreat that also has plenty of warmth and character. Taking cues from the lavender and copper bark of the Chinese Elm tree just outside, and aiming to complement the works of modern art in the homeowners’ collection, WFA’s design incorporates fixtures from Eny Lee Parker, Trueing, and Lostine and ceramics from Nur, MemorStudio, BZippy, and Shoko Teruyama among others. Custom pieces by WFA include a cylindrical terracotta bookshelf in the office, a living room credenza and brass-inlay coffee table, and WFA even enlisted LA-based designer Jesse Hammer to create a “cat wall” for feline friends.