Norwegian design brand A Part

Four Designers Just Got Together to Form a Norwegian Superbrand

Remember Temple of the Dog? The Traveling Wilburys? Cream? In music, the idea of a supergroup — in which several successful solo musicians band together to form a new group — is a familiar one. In design, it's less so — and yet that's exactly what four Norwegian designers have done with their new brand A Part, which launched earlier this week.
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Villa Stenersen was commissioned as a family residence in the late 1930s by Rolf Stenersen, a Norwegian stockbroker who had amassed a huge collection of modern art. It was designed, says Gudrun Eidsvik — the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design curator who gave us our tour — as a villa for receptions. "This was and is a really high-society neighborhood, and the house often played host to parties with artists and authors and theater people. The foyer was quite empty — they needed that space to be free — and the bar was essential."

Inside Villa Stenersen, Oslo’s Under-the-Radar Gem of Modernist Architecture

We first came across Villa Stenersen on a trip to Norway in 2016 and immediately fell in love with the corrugated wall, the glass bricks, the bright blue facade, the free-standing columnal fireplace, and, of course, the colors. Our visit there was so magical that when we heard one of our favorite photographers, Tekla Severin, was visiting Oslo, we implored her to photograph the house for us in all its waiting-to-be-refurbished glory.
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Meet Sigve Knutson, The Rising Star of Norwegian Design

Sigve Knutson is part of a special cadre of designers who seem to emerge from art school fully formed and gallery ready, their degree projects often representing some ingenious made-up process that acts as a bellwether for where the design world is headed. His 2016 thesis project from the Design Academy Eindhoven was immediately snapped up and developed by Carwan Gallery; earlier this year, when we called out a certain lumpen aesthetic as one of the top design trends for 2018, Knutson's work was the primary reason why.
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VI, VII_Exhibition view_Eva LeWitt at VI, VII_10 Courtesy of VI, VII, Oslo_Photography by Christian Tungeopener

In a New Exhibition in Oslo, Eva LeWitt (Yep, That’s Sol’s Daughter) Comes Into Her Own

It can be difficult to approach the work of New York artist Eva LeWitt and not immediately attempt to place it in context with the work of her father, the late, great conceptual artist Sol LeWitt. So it makes sense that LeWitt, for her new exhibition at VI, VII Gallery in Oslo, might try to escape comparison entirely by using materials in such an opaque way that they reframe your initial appraisal of the work — you first must understand what exactly it is you're looking at.
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Inside the Home and Shop of Oslo’s Most Stylish Couple

To glimpse inside the home of the owners of the best design shop in Oslo is an exercise in great envy. (After all, the couple’s instantly recognizable style is so attuned to color we now pretty much want everything to be green and pink.) Alessandro D’Orazio and Jannicke Kråkvik — interior designers, stylists, and owners of Kollekted By, the aforementioned Norwegian design mecca — spent a year thinking about the look of their newly renovated fin-de-siècle apartment in Oslo.
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Emerging Norwegian designers Domaas Hogh

An Emerging Norwegian Design Duo, Inspired by the Scandinavian Winter

While others may bemoan this season’s ever-wintery temperatures, young Norwegian design studio Domaas/Høgh look to the colder skies as an excuse to imbue their work with a bit of coziness. “This might sound like a cliché, but seasonal change is not something that passes us by without notice,” note the duo, when asked what’s been inspiring them of late. In truth, that awareness seems to be instinctive to Norwegian designers as a whole.
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Camilla Low geometric sculptures

Oslo’s Camilla Løw on Her Graphic, Geometric Sculptures

There's this thing we do constantly at Sight Unseen that we don't even realize we're doing: We gravitate towards creatives who work in other disciplines, like art or fashion, only to find out they've either gone to school for or been massively inspired by design. Upon visiting, last June, the Oslo studio of sculptor Camilla Løw, whose work we'd seen on a few Tumblrs and fallen for, we quickly learned that she, too, fell into the latter camp — although she studied fine art, she spoke to us about architecture and her dreams of someday designing furniture, and showed us her prized books on Bauhaus jewelry and the work of Andrea Branzi. Some of her own pieces even function as vases or stools. But make no mistake, she is an artist, one who's shown at galleries like Jack Hanley and Andrew Kreps, fairs like Frieze, and museums like the Astrup Fearnley. Read on to learn more about her process and ideas, and how design fits into it all.
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Hallgeir Homstvedt, Designer

As we prepare to welcome the new year, let's all take a moment to reminisce about how great 2014 was. Sure, some had better years than others, but there's one thing that can't be contested — Norwegian designer Hallgeir Homstvedt had an immensely successful run, launching four products to the market and cementing relationships with companies like Muuto, Lexon, and Established & Sons. So what is it exactly that brings manufacturers knocking at his door? We've got a hunch that it's the designer’s ability to be adaptable and cooperative throughout the design process, whilst sticking to a very distinct concept, something he learned on the job during a three-year stint with design studio Norway Says. His products are tactile and interactive, smart and perfectly proportioned.
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Another stylishly appointed cultural institution we visited was the artist-run gallery Kunsternes Hus, which had a show on of drawings by the late great textile designer Synnøve Anker Aurdal, whose work you should Google immediately if you don't already know it.

In Norway

If anyone needed proof this year that Scandinavia had quietly usurped London's status as the world's hottest contemporary design scene, it could be found at the Salone del Mobile in April, where the presentation that Danish brand Hay put on, complete with a pop-up shop and an utter madhouse of a cocktail party, was pretty much the talk of the town. It's entirely thanks to the rise, in the past few years, of not just Hay but brands like Menu, Ferm Living, One Nordic, Muuto, Gubi, and Design House Stockholm, all of whom are working with emerging talents across the region. As we've watched the Nordic scene grow, we've managed to pay visits to Sweden (three times), Denmark (twice), and Finland (once, in the dead of winter, natch) — even to Iceland, for its DesignMarch festival three years ago. That left Norway as our personal holy grail, made doubly intimidating because of its famed reputation for being outrageously expensive. Two weeks ago, as you may have noticed on Instagram, we finally took the plunge.
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