Australia, Nelson, Vintage Herman Miller
We were excited to see these two beauties pop up in our inbox, via the wonderful Australian store Angelucci 20th Century. Two vintage George Nelson Swag Leg Chairs with the original Herman Miller fibreglass shells in great condition (circa. 1958). A rare find indeed in Australia! I wonder what stories they hold…
Inspired, Japan, Singapore
We fell a little bit in love with the Singapore Icons Studio Project, initiated by Singapore’s fabulous Supermama to create a collection of porcelain ware in collaboration with Japanese porcelain company Kihara Inc. Five designers from various studios were invited to participate in the project and to explore the idea of contemporary Singapore icons. The collection of porcelain ware which is represented by Supermama’s in-house brand Democratic Society is the stunning result and they’re already selling out. It’s a project that marries art and culture and designer and maker into one beautifully refined and finished collaboration. You can see the full range at the Supermama shop.
(above) Housing Development Board inspired series by Chang Shian Wei
(above) National Bird of Singapore by Relay Room
Art, Design, India, Textiles
Many a Kvadrat fabric has upholstered a Herman Miller chair and we think their playful installation The Wool Parade a “choreography of objects” by UK/Indian design studio Doshi Levien is the kind of playful project Charles and Ray Eames would have approved of. It was inspired by the avant-garde parties and architectural theatre costumes from the early Bauhaus period, with the aim of showcasing the unique qualities and characteristics of wool.
It’s delightful – see the complete animation here.
We love the use of reclaimed materials reflecting local colours and textures in the new Camper store and headquarters by architects neri & hu in Shanghai. [via designboom]
Furniture, Sighted, Singapore
Yves Béhar’s SAYL chair provides a comfortable spot to sit and take in the lush greenery at Singapore’s PARKROYAL on Pickering Hotel, designed by WOHA architects.
[image courtesy dezeen]
China, Design, Designers, Inspired
Beaches, cities, amusement parks, theatres, oceans and forests have all been subjects of Beijing artist Xiaoteng Zou‘s intricately crafted paper sculptures. The young designer is commissioned by some of China’s leading magazines for his creations, including Vogue, GQ and AD Magazine.
Australia, Designers, Interview, Textiles
Sixhands is an Australian textile house, originally set up by three friends in 2006 as a print design studio creating quality artwork for the local fashion industry. Their work naturally progressed into a range of interior textiles and the studio now produces a bold and colourful interior range that encompasses wallpaper, fabrics, rugs, cushions and lampshades which has developed quite a following. We caught up with founders Anna Harves and Brianna Pike to learn a little more…
We understand your background is in the fashion industry, could you tell us a little about that?
(Bri) Yes, both Anna and I have fashion roots, we studied a Bachelor of Design in Fashion & Textiles at UTS, that’s where we first met. We had individually been designing and working in the fashion industry for a while and we found there was a definite lack of inspired, local, print produce and that there was a market just waiting to be explored and re-invigorated.
How did Sixhands come to be? Tell us the story…
(Anna) We remained friends when we started working in the industry and then one day started Sixhands after identifying a niche for exclusive textile prints in the fashion market. For the first few years of the business Sixhands was purely a print design studio. We were doing monthly ranges which we would present to fashion labels.
After following our fashion roots for a few years & working with an extensive portfolio of designers, we started developing interior fabrics and products which are the core of the collection we have today.
What’s a typical day at the office?
(Bri) It’s funny, no two days are the same in Sixhandsland. Our first activity is usually our coffee date where we debrief, catch up on life and then it’s back to the studio. As a small business, Anna and I wear many hats, we could be doing anything from planning/concepts, designing to production or marketing. Our sales are all managed by distributers which allows us to focus more of our time on design, developing ranges and really focussing on cultivating our collection.
We still do a lot of custom artwork where you might find us creating an engineered wallpaper design that spans four walls of a room. Our custom services see us working on really varied projects, we work closely with interior designers to develop unique spaces.
Typical activities include:
· Site meeting for a custom design briefing meeting
· Client work- researching concepts and developing artwork
· Designing new products / range planning
· Working on artwork for Sixhands collection
· Colour proofing, we look at colour strike offs for production, both for our range as well as colour matching for clients bespoke work.
· site visit for a custom project to oversee the installation
· sourcing trips including meetings with suppliers
· trip to the library
· liaising with our sales team
· planning an event or product launch
· working on our website
· creating images for press; styling shots retouching
Has moving from fashion to interiors changed your style?
(Anna) The essence of the brand has not really changed, our approach to interior textiles is much the same as it is to fashion textiles, our products are very much ‘interiors from a fashion perspective’.
How is each new design created? Can you tell us a bit about the process?
(Bri) We design and develop the collections together, we will often both draw and photograph motifs which we work on and collectively plan ranges and prints. We always critique all our designs together to be sure they are truly a Sixhands print and have the opportunity to be well resolved artworks from both of our perspectives. We are very in tune with each other and regularly contact one another outside of work to share inspiration, ideas and experiences, we are both pretty compulsive with our creativity.
The range of products Sixhands offers is huge, encompassing everything from wallpaper and fabric to lampshades, cushions and greeting cards. What comes first, artwork or product?
(Anna) There is no exact recipe, sometimes the artwork comes first, other times we will be creating an artwork to go onto a specific product or placement. It’s good to be flexible and experiment as sometimes you can find beauty in the ‘mistakes’ or the ‘process’.
What are your personal favourites from the Sixhands range?
(Bri) I guess my favourites are the ones I have on my walls at home right? I have Crossbones Domino in the bedroom (see image above), it is Inspired by Mexico’s ‘Day Of The Dead’ festival, Crossbones is a joyous celebration of life, rather than a mourning of its passing. The bedroom is an explosion of fabrics, prints and textures with the colours kept to a neutral palette.
Colour is saved for the lounge room where I have Andy Pop arm chairs (below top) and Skater Wattle wallpaper (below, bottom).
(Anna) Probably Felicity Silk Road that I used in my wedding dress (see image below).
What influences and inspires you?
(Anna) We find inspiration from all around, a combination of collecting, photographing, travelling, library trips and researching concepts and directions as well as our friends doing their craft- artists, musicians, photographers.
Most rewarding achievements?
(Bri) We’ve had great opportunities to work on some fabulous custom projects. We recently worked on a collection of murals, portraits, floor rugs and outdoor fabrics for NEIL PERRY’S new restaurant in the Melbourne CROWN casino ROSETTA. The architecture, design, craftsmanship and fabrications are of extraordinary quality, it was a real honour to be asked to work on this project.
What’s in store for the future of Sixhands?
(Anna) We will eventually cover textiles for all aspects of your lifestyle, its always exciting to see what products we develop next!
Thank you Anna and Brianna.
The Lupin Research Park in Pune by Mumbai based Malik Architecture photographs like a modernist painting, the terracotta coloured earth walls a striking contrast against the blue Indian sky.
(Images courtesy of Malik Architecture.)
Designers, REACH Shanghai, Workspace
Keiko Toishi is an interior designer at the global firm Gensler. She works from the Gensler’s Shanghai office and her area of expertise is the Workplace. We were thrilled to have Keiko as a guest speaker at REACH Shanghai where she gave a wonderful presentation on the relationship between wellbeing and the workplace. Enjoy our interview with Keiko below.
Please tell us a little about Gensler and the huge scope of work the practice is involved in.
For starters, we have 20 different practice areas, 44 different offices worldwide, and 8 offices in Asia. The beauty of the company is that someone can approach Gensler with any kind of design inquiry and have it handled by our team. Whether it’s a lamp, or the world’s next super-tall building, we can (and will) design it. It allows us to market to a wide variety of clients and introduce them to our services. More specifically, we are best known for our expertise in workplace and corporate office design.
What is your background?
I am an interior designer and LEED AP BD+C specialising in corporate interior and commercial buildings at Gensler, Shanghai. I am also the Asia Regional Leader of Gensler’s Health & Wellness design initiatives. I am originally from Japan, I studied interior design at Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. I started my career at an interior design firm, S. Russell Groves, and worked on high-end retail stores, spas and residential projects. Later I joined Lifestyle studio of Gensler’s New York office and worked on specialized stores such as Barneys New York, Neiman Marcus and the Gucci flagship store on 5th Avenue. The experience in New York gave me opportunities to dive into user experience and craftsmanship details. I have been working in Workplace Studio at Gensler Shanghai for 3 years.
What do you enjoy most about your role at Gensler?
I enjoy collaboration and worldwide knowledge exchange with my colleagues. Gensler has a total of 44 offices worldwide, and that kind of network of talent and resources creates an extremely dynamic work paradigm for its employees. At Gensler, my colleagues and I are constantly interacting and communicating to better refine our projects, or help each other meet those challenging deadlines that China is infamous for.
Since moving to China, I have had great opportunities to help clients build their business in China. Because of this country’s explosive growth, the majority of the projects I have worked have been extremely unique, and really aren’t possible anywhere else. Flagship stores, global account rollouts, and large-scale projects are just a few examples of the types of design opportunities that I’ve had the chance to experience here. In all, my time in Shanghai has been instrumental in my own personal development as a designer.
What are some of the most memorable projects you have worked on?
One is a technology centre for a confidential oil company client, and the other one is the headquarters of a confidential IT client. These two on-going projects in China are the most memorable for me because of their complexity and uniqueness. Both projects were designed based on the study of client’s brand, business, technologies, culture and future. We believe that the designs and concepts we came up with based on our studies have added new value to the clients’ brands.
Another recent memorable project was the expansion of our own Gensler Shanghai office. We have introduced Wellness features in the space such as a meeting room which can easily be converted into a yoga studio, and new furniture that encourages people to work in different ergonomic postures. Our very own office space has turned into a physical example of how wellness can be incorporated in workplace design.
Can tell us a little about your presentation at REACH?
Gensler’s new design approach, “Wellbeing Design” aims to measurably improve wellbeing through the design of the physical workplace. Through research, we have categorized 10 factors of the physical environment that are shown to have both direct and indirect influences on physiological health as well as psychological wellbeing.
Thank you Keiko
Aeron Hockey, India
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Aeron Hockey championships last week and big congratulations to the Space Warriors (above) from Space Matrix Channai, who have been crowned 2013 All India Champions. It was a thrilling final match with some tough competition provided by runners-up MMoser from Bangalore – congratulations to the MMoser team also. Space Matrix will now go on to compete the 2014 Pan Asia Championships where they will certainly have their sights set on the main prize, especially considering they were runners-up in the 2011 Pan Asia Championships… 2014 could very well be theirs!
2014 will mark a very special year in the iconic Aeron’s Chair history, as it celebrates its 20th Anniversary. The 2014 Pan Asia Championships are sure to be a thrilling part of the celebrations and we hope you’ll join us there.
You can check out more action from the India Championships over at our Facebook album.