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Seven Designers Spent the Summer at an Italian Palazzo. Here Are the Results.

It would be a dream brief in any creative field: Set up shop in a 13th-century palazzo at the foot of the Italian Alps with a group of friends, and see what comes of it. And yet that's exactly what Étage Projects founder Maria Foerlev offered to her stable of designers this summer, inviting seven contemporary design practices to Palazzo Monti, an artist's residency program and creativity incubator.
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LDF Preview: The Online Design Gallery Redefining “Nordic”

For Now Nordic, Adorno invited curators from Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Reykjavik and Oslo to assemble a collection from 5-7 designers working at the intersection of art, design, and craft. The point of the exhibition was to explore whether the label "Nordic" — or what the organizers call "design-world shorthand" for clean lines, natural materials, simplicity and functionality — can meaningfully describe an aesthetic or if lumping designs from different countries together actually does each of them a disservice.
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14 Up-and-Coming American Designers, In a Show Curated By One of Their Own

As people whose job it is to track emerging designers — particularly those on the American scene — it's rare that we walk into a show to find incredible work by a roster of relative unknowns. And yet that's exactly what happened when I rolled up to Fernando Mastrangelo's studio in deep (deep) Brooklyn last Friday night for the opening party of In Good Company: Material Culture. It's the second exhibition Mastrangelo has curated in his space — this time alongside Architectural Digest's senior design writer Hannah Martin.
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Kueng Caputo’s Kaleidoscopic New Furniture, On View in Copenhagen

Since the beginning of their practice, the Swiss duo Kueng Caputo have been obsessed with what happens when colorful particulate matter is somehow fused together. After all, their first, attention-grabbing project was a series of chairs in which pigmented sand and mortar were hardened in a mold and then chiseled into shape. Their newest works, currently on view at Copenhagen's Étage Projects in a exhibition called Ciao Amico Mio, follow in that same vein.
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The Finnish Designer Using a Traditional Moroccan Wall-Surfacing Technique to Make Furniture

Amsterdam-based designer Tuomas Markunpoika aims for “tedious functionality” in his designs, but to us there is mystery and wonder in the bulbous, colorful slabs of material that compose his furniture. His new series of works is called “Contra Naturam,” or against nature — a mauve bench, a coffee table and chair in grayish and springy greens, and a side table and console in pale yellow and cream. Each looks cut from the earth or plucked from a stage set, at once natural and totally fake.
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A Short List of Everything We Loved At This Year’s Design Miami/Basel

Even if nothing else of interest had launched at last week's Design Miami/Basel, we would have still done this round-up if only to feature Galerie VIVID's Column Paintings by Thomas Trum, seen at the top of this post; nothing about the recent Design Academy Eindhoven's previous two-dimensional work could have prepared us for the awesomeness of these two-toned painted shelving units. Luckily, there was other good stuff at the fair to be found as well.
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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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At a New Show, Thomas Barger Upcycles Your IKEA Discards Into Collectible Design

At just 25 years old, Thomas Barger finds himself wrestling with the ordinary — the idea that he’ll soon be kicked off his parents’ health insurance when he turns 26 — and the extraordinary — raising a solo show of sculptural furniture, on view through March 31 at Salon 94 Design. A recent nod from Architectural Digest and a sale to prominent art dealer and collector Javier Peres also signal Barger’s ascendency into the artistic stratosphere. But while all of these realities point to his newfound adulthood, the works on display at the gallery look backwards to the underpinnings of a youth spent growing up gay on a farm in Mattoon, Illinois.
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10 Things We Loved at the 2018 Collective Design Fair

There were, to say the least, a lot of changes at Collective Design this year — the largest, of course, being the week in which it was held. But ironically, the year that Collective broke from NYCxDesign's May calendar and moved to coincide with the Armory, Independent, and NADA, is the year it featured the most instances of contemporary furniture yet.
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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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Detroit designer Chris Schanck at Friedman Benda

In a New Show, Chris Schanck Debuts Furniture Fit for an Alien King

If you're familiar with Detroit-based designer Chris Schanck's work, you can probably easily conjure an image of it in your mind — primitive yet shiny, lumpen yet somehow slick at the same time. Since 2011, when he was an MFA student at the Cranbrook Academy of Art, Schanck has been developing and refining a technique he calls Alufoil, which is responsible for that shiny, otherworldly aesthetic — it often looks as though Schanck is making executive furniture for an alien king.
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Our Favorite Finds from the 2017 Salon Art + Design

We've never been ones who needed an excuse to dress up, so last Thursday we happily headed uptown to the Park Avenue Armory for The Salon Art + Design, generally considered to be New York's fanciest design fair. We've only recently begun attending the Salon in part because the fair has only recently reached a tipping point, where the quality and number of boundary-pushing contemporary pieces matches the number of vintage ones on display — all of which, of course, reflects a more general trend in the collectible design world.
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