In This Mexican Ceramicist’s Pottery, Traditional Clay Gets a Refined and Contextual Upgrade

Eugenia Díaz Peon, a Mexican ceramicist who prefers to go by the nickname of Uxi, discovered her calling not very long ago. As co-founder of the Yucatán-based brand Région, she began traveling in recent years to remote locations outside of her home base in Mérida, to learn from the traditional craftspeople who typically work far outside the city. There, she was particularly drawn to a clay known as “el barro de Ticul," or the mud of Ticul. Rough, dirty, and filled with impurities, the clay is like a terracotta, but with a more luminous color and texture.
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Ok Kim Uses a Centuries-Old Korean Lacquer Technique to Make These Very 2021 Pieces

The Seoul-based artist and designer Ok Kim makes colorful contemporary art and furniture using Ottchil, a centuries-old Korean technique that’s at risk of dying out. "Ottchil" refers to the sap that seeps out of lacquer trees when cuts are made in its bark; the substance is a natural lacquer that’s mixed with fine sand and pigments to achieve a variety of durable finishes for furniture.
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Meet the Lithuanian Designer Making Anthropomorphic Furniture Inspired by Klee and Miro

Lithuanian-born newcomer Barbora Žilinskaite, who felt so stifled by her highly technical and traditional design education at the Vilnius Academy of Arts that her first collection as a new graduate flew WAY in the opposite direction. In this case, though, it was a good thing — that collection, called Roommates, is bizarre in the most delightful and sophisticated of ways, featuring a foot-shaped table, hand-shaped magazine rack, and face-shaped table inspired in part by the paintings of Paul Klee and Joan Miró.
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In Lucas Morten’s Hands, Scandinavian Design Becomes Something Much Darker

Swedish designer Lucas Morten’s Klot chair is sculpted from Styrofoam and his Skal vases are formed from stiffened burlap cloth. These improbable materials are the result of his general curiosity about life and his constant search for beauty. “The whole philosophy behind my objects revolves around breaking the Swedish heritage of ‘functionality first’,” he says. “I’m really inspired by the total beauty that can be found beyond practical aspects and interested in what that kind of beauty means to the human being.”
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This Swiss Designer’s Unfussy Furniture is Inspired By the Sunshine of His New Spanish Home

When Antonius Dreier moved from Switzerland to Madrid just over a year ago, the light and lifestyle in the Spanish city inspired a debut furniture collection from Studio Drei that’s most at home in the spots where the sunshine spills inside. “I think the move has had a great impact on my pieces,” he says. “The culture of this country and its craftwork are very present in my first catalogue.”
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Designer Mac Collins Mines His Family History To Imagine Brighter Black Futures

Mac Collins's Iklwa series debuted at London Craft Week this month, produced by legacy manufacturer Benchmark. Comprising two lounge chairs — one large and one small — and a side table, the collection is named for a style of short spear used by the Zulu, the chair featuring armrests that echo its shape. It's a compelling introduction to the 25-year-old's distinct yet disruptive approach, informed by his Jamaican heritage as well as his background in art and sculpture.
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6 Up-and-Coming Chinese Designers to Watch

A trinity of qualities anoints China as one to watch in the independent design landscape: a raft of regional, incubating talent; prodigious market demand; and design and production innovation. We recently spoke with six talents from the rising creative class to get an accurate read on a burgeoning design scene in China — which is increasingly showing itself to be not only uniquely Chinese but also distinctly of-the-moment.
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Mario Tsai Chinese design

Though He Designs for Of-the-Moment Brands, Mario Tsai Isn’t Inspired By Trends

When Hangzhou-based designer Mario Tsai was growing up, he’d take apart the electronics in the house. Luckily for him, his parents were forgiving. He’d also collect old, tossed-out electric components and scrap pieces of wood to make new things. “I made many things that adults would consider strange,” he says, but that early freedom to explore has proven foundational for his design practice. A research-centered approach is the basis of Mario Tsai Studio, founded in the summer of 2014, which produces elegant, contemporary furniture and conceptual lighting design.
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This New Ceramics Brand is a Collab Between Two Parisians and the Berber Craftspeople of Northern Algeria

The unconventional ceramics brand IBKKI is the brainchild of Parisians Azel Ait-Mokhtar and Youri Asantcheeff. Their collections are a physical manifestation of their travels to the Kabylie region of Algeria and their collaboration with Berber craftspeople, but the duo didn’t take their cues from European Modernists like Matisse and Picasso, who had a tendency to appropriate elements from African art and call them their own.
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