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TList: Maison&Objet 2018

Jan 26, 2018

Film stars, Himalayan wool and Kyoto bamboo craft: we’ve put together a list of our favourite picks from the most recent edition of Maison&Objet

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Text by Rab Messina

From deskware to rugs, from honouring ancient Japanese craftsmaking to Victorian satire, here is the TList featuring our picks from the January 2018 edition of Maison&Objet.

Designer: Élise Fouin
The Kyoto Contemporary Project linked Parisian designers and Kyoto artisans, bringing together people like Élise Fouin and Yoshishige Tanaka, a master craftsman. The result was the Saika, a fixture made using the hyogu technique of sticking together several sheets of washi paper. Just like the kakejiku hangings that used the same process and adorned Japanese houses in the past, the subtle wrinkles in the paper of the Saika invite contemplation.

Designer: Ekaterina Elizarova
Crystal Valley powerhouse Preciosa commissioned a lighting piece from Red Dot winner Ekaterina Elizarova. The Russian designer —the first of her fellow countrymen to work with the Czech brand— proposed the crisp Geometric piece. “I wanted to design something really pure in shape, because crystal glass is like a diamond,” she explained. “To show the beauty of a diamond you don’t need to have much decoration: just a very simple, clear and stylish frame. Because of this, you can have different combinations of the Geometric lamp, and that is why it is unique.”

Designer: Juan Montoya
Just like at the Oscars, Moonlight is a winner here: Colombian architect Juan Montoya thought of the moon hitting the countryside for the complex cosmic patterns of Stepevi’s new rug collection. The four designs are made of wool, high-quality viscose and the stuff of children’s bedtime stories —and they are, as Montoya puts it, “an attempt to translate the significance of the universe in an everyday life.”

Designer: Sebastian Herkner

Did you read those 2018 fashion forecasts that announced berets as the next big hat trend? For those of us who can’t bear the thought of putting it on our heads, Sebastian Herkner gives us the option of putting it on our tables —and we’re very happy with the results. The German designer got his inspiration from the felt hat to come up with silky-looking brass lids over tinted glass containers for Turkish brand Nude. Thank you, Nude; sorry, Gosha Rubchinskiy.

Designer: Brad Ascalon
And it was a double act for Nude, actually: another fashion favourite, Audrey Hepburn, was the inspiration for Brad Ascalon’s Hepburn glassware collection. Although the actress mostly skipped alcohol —the only time she relaxed her rules was during the filming of My Fair Lady, when she resorted to beer to gain weight for the role—, we figured she would have still gone for a mixology set like this one at home. As for us, we haven’t mastered the perfect Dahlgren yet, but Ascalon’s elegantly sensual highball and lowball glasses, coupes, pitches, stirrer and shaker make us want to keep trying.

Designer: OEO Studio
File this under “Bamboo done right.” The material has been a staple of Kyoto brand Kohchosai Kosuga for more than a century, and they recently asked Copenhagen-based OEO Studio for a set of home accessories. Inspired by the terraced Japanese landscape, the Plateau collection offers a a soap tray, a potpourri box and a tissue box with studied differences in levels of height.

Designer: Elena Salmistraro
Most people read Flatland, the 1884 novel by Edwin Abbott Abbott, and come away with a better understanding of women’s roles in Victorian England. Italian designer Elena Salmistraro’s takeaway? The geometric shapes that inhabited the fiction’s two-dimensional universes come alive in Cartesio, her rug design for cc-tapis. “Triangles, lines, circles and squares overlap, meet and collide, becoming conscious of each other, just as they do in the novel, unaware of the colours and the magic they hold,” she explained. Seeing this Himalayan wool beauty, may we suggest some Julio Cortázar for Salmistraro’s reading list?

Designer: Peter Marino
Don’t let the name fool you: the only use of corporal force in Peter Marino’s Black Belt vases is in the strength of the glassmakers who achieved the bands of pulled black glass in the pieces. Venini is offering four shapes —oval, square, triangle and figure eight— in pink, green and tea, featuring techniques like the ancient sbruffo (“puffed,” in Italian) and the sommerso (“submerged”). Heads up for any purchases: this limited collection is made up of 349 works by colour and size.

Designer: Martha Sturdy
We still haven’t gotten over the humanoid claymation universe created by Art Clokey —any fellow Gumby fans out there?—, so we’re happy Martha Sturdy is giving us the chance to respectably fulfil one of our childhood dreams with her Prime collection. The Vancouver-based designer presented a set of hand-poured resin furniture in shades of red, blue and yellow, using circles, cubes, cylinders and rectangles forms. Sturdy was previously known for her earth tones and warm metals, so this was quite a departure. “I wanted to show that colour doesn’t have to be complicated or distracting, and that when combined with clean and confident forms, its boldness can be grounding,” she said.

Designer: Thomas Dariel
Speaking of childhood dreams, here’s one somehow inspired by Salvador Dalí and a young girl. French designer Thomas Dariel named his daughter after the Catalonian surrealist, and then named Maison Dada’s Dali Divina lamp after her. No wonder: one can’t help but smile upon the sight of the cherry-stalk shaped knob on the light switch, as well as the proportions of the pyramidal base and the dome-shaped lampshade. A note to Spanish band Mecano: Dalí might not have come back as a pencil nor a paintbrush, but a lamp like Dariel’s is also a fine avenue.

Élise Fouin's Saika fixture for the Kyoto Contemporary Project
Ekaterina Elizarova's Geometric lamp for Preciosa
One of Juan Montoya's Moonlight rugs for Stepevi
Sebastian Herkner's Beret collection for Nude
Brad Ascalon's Hepburn collection for Nude
OEO Studio's Plateau collection for Kohchosai Kosuga
Elena Salmistraro's Cartesio (left) for cc-tapis
Peter Marino's Black Belt collection for Venini
Martha Sturdy's Prime collection
Thomas Dariel's Dali Divina for Maison Dada

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