ARTS THREAD takes a look at the wealth of talent in Furniture this year at New Designers. The Tune-Tune Musical Chair is a quirky seating design from Jo-Yun Wang of Edinburgh College of Art. Jo-Yun has created a musical swivel chair designed for children and she has also catered for the younger child with the Ensemble Caster Chair which includes a back support. Each chair plays a variety of different notes when rotated, meaning when a number of chairs are used simultaneously, ‘users can produce an unintentional group interaction resulting in the creation of a unique mutually shared musical experience.’
Raw, natural materials are a running theme in this year’s furniture design and James Pettinger from Bucks New University celebrates the material cane with his table and chair set Jeremy. Using no glue, screws or typical joints, James wanted to show how practical and aesthetically pleasing raw cane can be if used correctly, in this case, he has laced the wood pieces together. Acid stained copper is used for the table top which has been lacquered for its final finish. Alongside the table is a dodecagon 12-sided stool that uses stretched cane to create the seat itself. Together they provide a raw yet decorative set of furniture.
Continuing the a celebration of natural materials this year within furniture design is Jennifer McDowell of Nottingham Trent University who has produced Bow, a traditionally styled seat made of elm and ash timber and manufactured using purely green woodworking techniques; therefore zero electricity.
Exploiting the natural qualities of green timber Jennifer has not used any adhesives, instead, simple slot joints that allow the product to expand, lock and strengthen itself with age. To fit in with the theme of longevity, Jennifer has cleverly incorporated two silhouettes between the spindles which, ‘reflect the meeting and sharing of Bow’s owners through its lifetime.’
Growtank explores growing food in an indoor environment when natural resources and land are limited. By utilising each compartment of the design ie the fish waste and water feeds the plants situated in the baskets, food that is grown is used for human food. This process hope to redevelop the relationship that people have with the production of their food that has arisen from supermarket buying. This method of growing not only uses 90% less space but also less water than traditional methods of harvesting.
Home time becomes even more enjoyable with Shih Wen Wang from Edinburgh College of Art’s new CLOCK. Simple but effective, this design blends into most environments. The product’s simple black and red dot replacement of numbers allows a quick glance to be sufficient to know the time. An added feature, Key Message, allows the consumer to hang their keys on the clock when work starts. When the time set to finish work comes around, the keys drop off the clock, alerting you that it is home time.
Zizhao Shi (Francis) from Edinburgh College of Art has produced a domestic playground that encourage children to play amongst the furniture and provides a piece that is adaptable for all ages. Made from sycamore wood, a built-in tunnel allows playtime and relaxing time to intertwine.
Josie Baker of Plymouth University has produced Clothes Shelf. Josie has achieved her aim of finding a solution to hanging your washing in small living spaces. Her product is multi-functional as it can also be used as a shelf, adding to its decorative nature. Inspired by wine racks, Josie’s floating clothes horse works by allowing you to simply slide the wooden poles out of the end of the shelf and placing them in the allocated grooves. Josie has stuck to two basic timbers, bamboo and plywood, which she has woven together for extra strength.
Josh Cosh Hall of London Metropolitan University has designed an extremely versatile, dual functioning folding dining table, ideal for a modern city home. Whilst using traditional techniques and conventional ideas, Josh has used mortise and tenon joints as well as dovetail joints for longevity.
Designed for a couple sharing a small city apartment this piece allows the owner to make use of the space available, whilst being able to accommodate guests or a dinner party by it collapsible structure. Made by combining both machine and hand craftsmanship, the table has been produced in American White Oak with Brass fittings, sealed in Shellac and finished in clear wax.