Furniture and Lighting Pieces That Are Works of Art
From Paris to Milan, we look at a handful of functional furniture and lighting pieces that made heads turn with their artistic forms and expressive aesthetics.
The fusion of art with furniture and lighting is nothing new. The two industries in the decor industry have big brand names flaunting their wares to the crowds, design heads and art collectors. So, without further ado, let’s present a handful of tasteful furniture and lighting pieces that emanate artistic flair and aesthetics.
Inspired by discarded objects, Korean designer Jay Sae Jung created the “Salvage” chair. Based on today’s throw-away culture, he collected mundane items and conspicuously transformed them into unexpected shapes that became cohesive, purposeful objects to sit on. The result is the “Salvage” chair, which strongly expresses the current cultural issue of abundant waste in today’s culture. This artistic chair now appears as a likeable throne for people to sit on and perhaps ponder on how, as humans, we can put our waste to use better. Jay cited, “I hope that upon viewing the piece, people will reconsider the ordinary and find value in these products reborn. Innovation, invention, and beauty can emerge from anywhere, even from the most mundane, everyday objects that we put to waste.”
When devising Lasvit’s brand booth at Euroluce 2023, which ran alongside the big furniture fair — Salone del Mobile — its art director Maxim Velčovský dreamt up the theme “It All Comes from Above.” At the heart of the booth installation was Velčovský’s own feature lighting — it took inspiration from the sky, and the “The Cloud” lighting system came to life through technological LED tubes. It served as a spectacular mash-up of nature and sci-fi references to create this masterful display.
In the southwestern suburbs of Paris, the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres is an area renowned for its porcelain production. It was established in the mid-18th century as a factory, but through several transitions and ownerships — from the French crown to the government — it has now become a public organisation since its inauguration in 2009. Famous French designer Ronan Bouroullec is the latest collaborator to produce a collection of contemporary lighting objects to maintain the organisation’s artistry and craft.
Launched at the Paris+ Art Fair (From 17 to 22 October), the “Sèvres” floor and table lamps were displayed at the Manufacture de Sèvres’ booth. The unique and artistic lamps are composed of crisp and clean aluminium bases, contrasting beautifully with the glazed porcelain aureole or lampshades. They are available in three heights and sizes, also allowing end users to mix and match them to create delightful combinations. The porcelain lampshades are made through rigorous hand-throwing clay technique, resulting in sensuality and precision. The glaze finalises and materialises the product as it imparts an ethereal quality, rendering each piece teeming with movement, colour and detail.
Bouroullec’s take on the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres’ age-old techniques helps to reimagine ceramics with contemporary forms and aesthetics while honouring the institution’s traditional craftsmanship.
“It all quite delicately explodes in the kiln, and when the pieces are taken out, you’re not quite sure if they might be alive,” Bouroullec explains. “It could be a sea anemone, a portion of the sky, a flash of light in space. I wasn’t at all aiming for this, but there is a very natural quality that appears natural and uncontrolled.”
“You Can Sit With Us” was a collaborative art cum furniture project formed by
Russell Whitehead and Jordan Cluroe of 2LG Studio. The exhibition was part of the London Design Festival 2023 and presented a diverse mix of new and emerging designers. The 2LG Studio founders invited 13 designers from a broad mix of races, nationalities, genders and backgrounds to partake in this striking exhibition. The long table was curated with a medley of chairs each designed by a different participant. There were three chairs that stood out: “The Chair” by Anna Maria Øfstedal Eng features a black lacquer finish with a blobby frame; Sam Klemick’s chair fuses a sweater into its carved wood form; Helen Kirkum is a footwear designer, and she produced an eye-catching lounge seat with upholstery made from recycled trainer insoles.