Sotheby's latest design auction, Important 20th Century Design, takes place in New York on 19 June 2007 and what's up for bid is a telling snapshot of contemporary international design. Upon browsing the catalog, we weren't surprised to find prototypes and limited editions from the likes of both well-established and emerging notables alike. The list includes Ron Arad, Zaha Hadid, Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Jason Miller, Shiro Kuramata, Marcel Wanders, Jasper Morrison, Aranda & Lasch, Harush Shlomo, Fernando and Humberto Campaña and Maarten Baas as well as the iconic Jean Prouvé, George Nakashima, Frank Gehry and Ingo Maurer, to name a few.
One indie American designer in the mix caught our eye in particular. Chris Ferebee of the Brooklyn-based studio, 521 Design, whose award-winning HIVE Shelving Unit is in one of the coveted lots. After the design was lucky enough to be featured in tons of design magazines and won a â€œGood Designâ€ award from the Chicago Athenaeum, Ferebee and business partner Laurice Parkin wanted to bring the piece to the design-loving masses. But alas, the molded plywood with the sensuous curves and unique organic form was only produced in a prototypical run of 10. It is one of these signed and numbered pieces that is up for grabs to the highest bidder. When we recently caught up with Ferebee, he said, "I'm excited and thoroughly honored that Sotheby's has included me with all these great designers both past and presentâ€”many of which have inspired my work and continue to do so."