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.
More
NeriHu_opener

China’s Most Influential Design Duo on the Country’s Future As a Cultural Powerhouse

To understand the contemporary design scene in China, learning about Neri&Hu’s work is a prerequisite. The country has experienced phenomenal social and architectural growth over the last two decades, and the pair have been a key part of the powerful creative driving force behind it, contributing numerous landmark designs inside and outside the country. I spoke with them about their current projects, and China’s place in the modern world.
More
Yoko_Portrait

Guest Editor Yoko Choy Explores the Work in Progress That is Chinese Design

Chinese design is still finding its way and is too diverse to be captured in a neat single identity. So while the global community may be eager to create a brand for this emerging body of work, defining it is still a work in progress. In the 15 years I’ve been working as a design journalist, I’ve been asked constantly, “What is Chinese Design”? I, too, have been asking myself that same question. And I feel that now I’m finally seeing an answer (or answers) and am proud to share my discoveries, some of which formed the basis for my guest-editor curation this week.
More
Schanck_Shuddering_Chair_Table

Week of September 21, 2020

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: a long list of exhibitions you can (for the most part) see in person (finally!); a chic online shopping list of wall hangings and haute nursery finds; and an upstate stunner with deeply-hued walls and some Sizable Knobs Your Kitchen Needs Now!
More
Volume-Website-Install2

An Immersive Interplay of Light and Color at Volume Gallery in Chicago

The Chicago studio Luftwerk have made a career out of exploring the interplay of color, light, and colored light, as so many artists before them have done and so many will continue to do. But the defining factor of their work has always been its interaction with architecture, whether the duo were projection-mapping a light show onto Falling Water or bouncing trippy patterns off Anish Kapoor's bean in Millennial Park. This month, however, they left behind that construct to mount their first solo gallery show, at Chicago's Volume Gallery, where it's their ideas alone that are on display.
More
Ibkki8

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.
More
casawabi

A Round Table on the Ethics of Working With Artisans, and How to Respectfully Bridge Cultural and Geographic Divides

Over the last year, I've been laying the foundation for a new company that aims to connect Thailand and the U.S. through the universal languages of craft and design. I found myself thinking about how designers can foster a respectful, non-exploitive engagement when they're creating products with artisan communities rather than in factories, so I organized a roundtable discussion on the topic with three participants who have experience in bridging barriers of geography or culture: Peter Mabeo of Mabeo Furniture, Casa Wabi director Carla Sodi, and Tantuvi founder Arati Rao.
More
Thinkk_opener

By Innovating Local Materials and Manufacturing, This Bangkok Studio Is Redefining Thai Design

Decha Archjananun and Ploypan Theerachai, the couple behind the Bangkok-based product and furniture-design studio Thinkk, named their practice after their core professional pursuit: to think past the obvious and propose a new narrative for what it means to be “made in Thailand.” It’s a theme they’ve explored not only in their own work, but through exhibitions and projects they’ve organized since graduating from European design schools (ECAL and Konstfack) and returning to Thailand to found their studio in 2011.
More
Sukrachand_Portrait

Guest Editor Robert Sukrachand Wants Us To Embrace the World’s Diverse Design Perspectives

As part of our 2020 Guest Editors series, we've asked each editor to write a personal essay that introduces themselves and the ideas and inspirations behind their week of content on Sight Unseen. Today, meet Robert Sukrachand, a New York furniture designer and American Design Hot List alum. "I’ve aimed to stop trafficking in the binary language that separates 'craft' from 'design,' or 'primitive' from 'modern,'" he writes. "The rigidity embodied in these distinctions is a tool that reinforces colonial hierarchies."
More
AnnaJensen_Functional_1

Week of September 14, 2020

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: three new (ish) puffy chairs, a collection of graphic ceramic tiles by Nathalie du Pasquier, and a suite of styrofoam-and-resin floral furniture with millennial-weirdo vibes.
More

SU Shop

Seeing Things T-Shirt
Wave Barrette
V52 Tapestry Blanket
Large Vayu Floor Planter
Wave Vase
Kokomo Pitcher and Cups
Cordage Mug
Ellsworth Earrings