New material explorations, design innovation, and considered production were prominent themes contained in the student work exhibited at ICFF 2011.

One of the particularly interesting components of the International Contemporary Furniture Fair is the yearly collection of design schools who exhibit student work. It is a good place to spot what young designer are up to see projects which are more concept and idea based rather than production ready. The work from three schools caught our attention this year and each generally presented work that was all created around single design briefs.

The Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) presented a collection called ‘Recyclable Composites‘ which featured prototypes created from Twintex, an environmentally friendly composite material. Twintex is a combination of glass and polypropylene fibers which when exposed to heat, become rigid. The students used the thread like material often wrapped around molds to create furniture and lighting prototypes that have a woven character and look quite complex. Misha Kahn's table base for instance is created from hundreds of strands of Twintex which form the four legs.

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