Tuesday, May 26, 2009

ICFF 2009 - Part 1 (Notable New-to-me Designers)

I feel I'm a bit tardy in posting my coverage of last week's International Contemporary Furniture Fair, but regardless here is the first installment of the things that caught my eye at this year's show.


I don't usually get too excited about wallpaper, but the nature-inspired designs presented by Madison & Grow impressed me. I especially liked the green mussel shell design. Their wallpaper is produced using smart, eco-sensitive materials like non-toxic inks and FSC-certified paper.

Having opened up to wallpaper (and sucker as I am for the combo of hot vermilion and cool light blue) British designer Camilla Meijer knocked my socks off. I don't know to what extent her product may be green, but it sure is pretty.

This groovy little chair by D.E. Sellers comes flatpacked. The assembly instructions are laser burned into the seat. It's not uncomfortable as a side chair and looks pretty neat. Though I can't recall if it's bamboo plywood or birch, for the literal yet aesthetic way it takes the flatpack form to a new level, I nominate it to become an icon of green design.

I liked the rolled stainless steel desk made by young designer Jason Radcliffe of Cleveland's Four Forty Steel. The well-constructed piece echos vintage steel desks and lab tables of the 1940s, but brings a freshness in its design details. Nice.

I was surprised to see the name Graypants hung on the wall of one booth, so parallel as it is to our own name. The cute, marketing-savvy boys responsible, who make these interesting hanging lights from recycled cardboard boxes among other things, named their Seattle-based company after the signature gray pants worn by one of them. Good enough for me.

Here chairs become bookshelves with the help of zip ties. I spotted these in the Design from Spain section, but can't locate the designer's info. Will post when found.

The young Milwaukee-based Misewell presented their first collection this year. With a good sensibility for combining wood, wool, and metal, the designs are adaptable and intelligently built in the USA.

I love meeting new-to-me Brooklyn-based designers, and was exciting to discover Scott Strickstein's unusual hanging lights. Made from a mesh of thickly glazed ceramic, I really like their texture and materiality. Strickstein also makes really nice table ware, including the socially-conscious "Bomb Bowls."

A group of Belgian designers presented especially high-energy furniture. I liked the colorful wardrobe, pictured here at the back, built by Maarten De Ceulaer from custom-made suede suitcases.

Evoking spinning wheels, tea tables, and bicycle wheels, the elegant, spidery, laqured maple American Gothic Table by Jonah Takagi (Atelier Takagi) held my attention for some time.

Next up, our ICFF coverage of:

- Furniture Gone Wild
- Interesting Materials
- Standouts by Greenjeans Faves
- Table Fights!

Stay tuned...

Posted and images by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

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