If this year’s installment of Stockholm Design Week and the Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair are anything to go by, 2020 will be a memorable one. After a few years of pretty austere shapes, colors and offerings (no doubt tied to our collective feelings about the state of the Western world), it now seems designers have had enough doom and gloom. Stockholm radiated warmth and happiness with maximal primary colors leading the way, splashed across the stands and installations in this traditionally monochromatic and minimal city. Here we have selected some of the standouts—from the cheerful to the sustainable, bright, bold and playful.
Note Design Studio
Note Design Studio‘s installation Adjectives (at Stockholm’s institutional auction house Bukowskis), featured pieces from Vibia, Kvadrat and Mutina alongside a selection of art pieces from the Bukowskis’ archive. It was a sensory journey and an exploration into how spacial design can charge the soul.
The Kinship Method
At the golden Sven Harrys gallery was The Kinship Method. Five designers took part in a creative process in which they designed new chairs that were then “infiltrated” by another one of the designers, before being passed to yet another. The only rule was that each designer had to use 20-40% of the chair’s style. The resulting 15 chairs were on display, allowing viewers to see the evolution and links between each piece.
At women collective Misschiefs‘ part-installation, part-performance, phones were banned. In addition, the somewhat grimy apartment inside Bångska Palace gave the show a bold edge. Here, 10 women designers were selected to show their work which spanned design, art and craft. Pieces by Farvash, Kitty Schumacher and Märta Mattsson all stood out and impressed visitors.
At the fair, Scandinavian talent rises effortlessly. Fogia took a turn from its trademark soft hues with five new pieces made from pin-striped MDF panels, shot through with fiery red accents. Among the standouts were Supersolid, a range of functionally-nondescript design objects in solid oak; as well as Hood, a piece designed with TAF Studio, who sought to create an armchair with as little material as possible. Rumored to be almost five years in development and inspired by the hoodie, Hood features a seat that uses only weight-bearing fabric and seaming to hold its shape, stretched around a two-piece bent metal frame. Simple, but remarkably comfortable.
A G O Lighting
Tucked in a quiet corner, Seoul-based A G O Lighting drew admiring glances with a detail-focused collection comprised of pieces by four Scandinavian and South Korean designers: John Astbury & Tove Thambert, studio word, Bymars and JWDA. Great colors and pleasing forms joined comprehensively packaged visuals from this newly minted label.
Tarkett demonstrated that even a world leader can make inroads into closing the loop, with the launch of iQ Naturals, which uses mass balance principles to create its latest vinyl flooring range (composed of bio mass as opposed to fossil mass). Not only does the range show incredible environmental credentials but the entire stand was set to be recycled back into its production facility and turned into new flooring or saved and reused during the year in other installations.
Oi Creations—based between Saigon and Stockholm—burned bright with impeccable details on chairs, stools and side tables. With a very sustainable standpoint on materials, the studio uses natural latex as padding instead of foam and makes various other smart, eco-conscious decisions when creating their lovely pieces.
Images courtesy of respective brands and studios