PSFK’s 2012 Design Week Review: Wire Furniture Is The New Wood

PSFK’s 2012 Design Week Review: Wire Furniture Is The New Wood

We round-up the most interesting themes and designs from this year's International Contemporary Furniture Festival and the surrounding exhibitions.

Dave Pinter, PSFK
  • 16 june 2012

The 2012 New York Design Week provided a comprehensive look at current furniture, lighting and surface material trends with American designers especially occupying the spotlight. The International Contemporary Furniture Fair at the Javits Center still served as the epicenter but off-site events like Wanted Design, Model Citizens and the NOHO design district were some of the destinations where the really cool stuff was. Next year, the City of New York will launch an initiative to promote Design Week in hopes of attracting more participation from other design disciplines (digital, graphic, product ect.) as well as the general public.  2013 will certainly be an exciting year for design in New York City.

Below are highlights from both the ICFF and sites around of work by designers that represented a strong idea or re-imagined the products we live with new form and function.

Wire furniture was featured in a lot of the stands and off-site exhibitions. Is this a response to people being more transient with how they live or making efficient use of materials in the design process? The examples we saw shared an element of pattern similar to surface meshes found in digital 3d models. Bend, based in Los Angeles debuted a new collection of seating, tables, lighting and accessories all made from wire with a powder-coated finish.

Bludot’s 2012 collection includes a wire base table called Scamp which can be paired with different top surfaces including white marble.

Zorine Pooladian, a Los Angeles based designer presented a wire chair called Silhouette at Wanted Design. While at first glance the overall shape looks simple, the wire visually communicates the structure and adds an element of complexity.

Tweet is an indoor/outdoor stool designed by Ji-in Kim. The bird cutout in the seat becomes an illuminated shape inside the wire base, which resembles a bird cage. When someone sits on the stool the bird disappears and as Kim says is set free.

Mio based in Philadelphia debuted a new furniture customizing service. Customers can apply their own artwork or select from a collection of three illustrators Danielle Rizzolo, David Galletly or Jonathan Bartlett that Mio is currently collaborating with. Mio’s Naked Cabinet and Naked Art Panels can be “dressed” with customer supplied photos, vector art, illustrations or corporate graphics at no extra charge.

Los Angeles based Phase introduced a new series of tables called Keys. Composed of a metal base with inset glass panels which can be user rearranged or updated with different colors.

Another example of an interesting material pairing is the Corliss Chair from Dunn Studio in Providence RI. Paying homage to George Corliss, the founder of the first independently-powered steam engine, the chair fuses an American hardwood base with a painted aluminum back available in either red, white or blue. The chair strikes a balance between the familiar and the innovative.

The Park Ave collection from Søren Rose Studio for De La Espada mixes materials and geography. The project blends influences from scandinavian tradition with New York’s contemporary vibe. Each of the pieces were designed overall to be simple and timeless as well as having an element of unique and unexpected character.

The LAMI chair from Marka Moderna is designed and built in El salvador with local craftsman. The chairs come painted in a variety of striped patterns inspired by vintage race cars.

Jangir Maddadi Design Bureau based in Sweden exhibited their Droid lamp which will catch the eye of any sci-fi fan. LED’s provide illumination through lenses in either the front or back and can be adjusted to produce specific colors.

Sticking with lighting, Roll and Hill created a pop-up showroom in a large storefront in the NOHO design district. An impressive installation of their ‘Endless Straight’ lamp which snaked through the space looked right out of Blade Runner. Bent wire showed up here too forming the structure of their ‘Bluff City’ pendant lights.

Republic of Fritz Hansen debuted the minuscule chair designed by Cecilie Manz with an exhibition of design process materials that created the final product. Two long glass covered tables just inside their showroom entrance contained sketches, models and prototype parts that gave insight into how the chair was developed. Manz’s design combines traditional craftsmanship with industrial production. Structural components of the chair are molded in plastic and the seating shell is upholstered in fabric with a hand stitched leather trim detail that follows the contour of the seat. It is rare that designers show the sketches and prototypes that lead to a final product together. This was a great example of how doing that tells a more complete story about a product.

Speaking of process, Raleigh Denim was invited by Bernhardt Design to bring their vintage sewing equipment to NYC and set up a temporary factory at Wanted Design. During design week, they produced jeans demonstrating the fabric cutting process thru to finished sewing. What was particularly amazing was seeing the skill of the sewers working the decades old machines, none of which were computer controlled.

International Contemporary Furniture Fair


Japanese Face Wash Creates A Perfect Rose Every Time

Arts & Culture
Mobile august 26, 2016

Get A Better Idea Of How You Are Wasting Your Time

The TouchTime app is trying to revolutionize personal task management by providing detailed insight on how to be more efficient

Culture august 26, 2016

London Telephone Box Repurposed As A Tiny Mobile Repair Shop

Tools and supplies to replace broken screens or damage are neatly stowed away in these micro-workrooms


Get PSFK's Latest Report: Future of Work

See All
Design august 26, 2016

Conceptual Sportswear Created Out Of Futuristic Condom Material

A Dutch fashion designer is experimenting with new methods and fabrics to make high performance clothing

Fashion august 26, 2016

Fashionable Tassel Will Ensure You Never Lose Your Valuables Again

The device is fashion meets connected tech, that will help you keep track of your belongings at all times


Brian Tiong

Asia Culture & Content Expert

Syndicated august 26, 2016

Would You Wear Wool Shoes To Save The Environment?

As demand for wool shoes grows, a number of US footwear brands are heading directly to the source: the sheep pastures of New Zealand

Sustainability august 26, 2016

Self-Healing Material Is Fashioned Out Of Squid Teeth

Penn State researchers have devised a new textile that uses organic proteins

Arts & Culture august 26, 2016

Search Engine Turns Your Own Drawings Into Photos

This image-matching software accepts hand-made sketches instead of keywords


Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders

PSFK Op-Ed august 25, 2016

Retail Expert: What Sustainability Means To The Millennial Generation

Jo Godden, Founder of RubyMoon, discusses how brands can limit their environmental impact worldwide

PSFK Labs august 25, 2016

PSFK’s Workplace Vision: How The Nurturing Of Seeds Will Come To Define The Onboarding Process

Our Future of Work vision is a service that allows companies to assemble and deliver welcome packets that are uniquely focused on the concept of growth

Arts & Culture august 26, 2016

Illustrator Interprets The Experiences Of Blind Travelers

Artist Alby Letoy creates drawings of poignant travel memories for the visually impaired

Advertising august 26, 2016

Clickbait Titles Used For The Good Of Charity

An agency devised an unlikely campaign that uses clickbait as a positive force to drive awareness to nonprofit initiatives

Advertising august 26, 2016

The Best In Eye-Catching Olympics Campaigns

PSFK rounds out the Rio Games with our picks for the best advertising moments off the field

Work august 26, 2016

Editorial Roundtable: The Arrival Of The People-First Workplace

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary and thinkPARALLAX enumerate the reasons why companies need an employee-embracing workforce in order to exist

Arts & Culture august 26, 2016

Transforming Light Waves Into A New Art Form

An artist uses glass treated with layers of metallic coatings to create a unique installation called lightpaintings


Rio Olympics
Innovation Coverage From The Rio Games

Design august 26, 2016

This Windbreaker Lets You Explore The Outdoors While Charging Your Phone

The apparel includes solar panels that allow the wearer to stay connected through the power of renewable energy

Asia august 26, 2016

The Goal Of This Game Is To Not Get Laid Off From Your Job

A hit mobile app has you working really, really hard to not get fired as you climb the corporate ladder

Advertising august 26, 2016

Movie Critic Bot Guides Viewers Through Festival Offerings

The Toronto International Film Festival has created a Facebook Messenger chatbot to help attendants curate their schedule

No search results found.