The Multitalented Bay Area Design-Development Team

on Tuesday, 31 May 2011. Posted in Objects

The product line inspired by important and enduring people, places and design movements.

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The Iconic Panels caught my attention in the first year at the design school in 2006. Helsinki's model carved pattern engraved in my memory. The simple, understated and peaceful lines of bare birch branches, carved into wood core panel and finished with white matte laminate layer would compliment the scenery of any Nordic inspired design. In 2009 B+N announced the launch of Iconic Furniture, a collection that fit with the panels. At that time, the wall panels were available in 15 patterns, and 13 color choices, including reclaimed wood options. B+N Industries from Burlingame, CA is a multiline manufacturer and design company, originally founded as a product distributor. The company has developed and broadened inventive systems and various product lines providing high levels of functionality and aesthetics for almost three decades. Having much of the production based in California, B+N complies with the state’s aggressive environmental laws and power consumption policies.Their ability to produce fixtures from sensibly farmed or post consumer raw, VOC and PVC free materials, show the desire to manufacture responsibly. The life cycle of the final product is considered in the initial design phase. The quality is intrinsic to all products and inherent flexibility of modular systems extend the usefulness and client's need for a change in the future.

The Art by Farmboy from Alberta

on Monday, 21 March 2011. Posted in People

"It takes a steady hand to carry a full cup."

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Farmboy Fine Arts is a dynamic art team from Vancouver that creates a client specific artwork, even whole collections. The eleven years old company develops site-specific art for various environments: healthcare, retail, corporate and hospitality, including globally recognized brands such as Trump, Hyatt, Caesar's Palace, MGM, Starwood and Wynn. A year after Farmboy Fine Arts started, the company suffered a setback due the 9/11. Farmboy project rebounded when it was awarded a six-figure contract with luxury hotel chain W Hotels. Todd Towers, the founding owner and creative director, credits his upbringing on a ranch (the Towers family has owned the ranch in Alberta for 100 years) and his father for his own business drive and success. He has converted a warehouse space into a gallery and worked at random jobs while building his art-making career. Once the business picked up, he strategically relocated to Vancouver to be closer to international markets. Today, Farmboy licenses work by more than 150 photographers, artists and illustrators. The services offered include a complete range of art consulting, strategy, concept development and planning, to procurement, logistics and installation. Farmboy is now broadening its reach and negotiating a deal for a line of home décor products.

Industrial Design perfection by Walter da Silva

on Friday, 21 January 2011. Posted in People

Italian style has always been associated with creativity and elegance. One of the most successful areas of Italian design has been automobiles.

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Walter Maria da Silva an Italian car designer, currently chief designer of the Volkswagen Group (including Volkswagen, Skoda, Bentley, Bugatti, SEAT, Audi and Lamborghini). 
Da Silva started at the age of 21 as an industrial designer for Fiat.
After this experience, da Silva worked at the Development Automotive Engineering Institute in Turin for nine years under the direction of Franco Mantegazza and Renzo Piano.
I have first noticed da Silva's design in the late 90's when he signed his name under Alfa Romeo 147 since then he was poached by SEAT, where among other he designed the Tango model in 2001. 
However, his favorite car design, in sixty year career, is the Audi A5, which was first launched in 2007. Another stunning model from the Audi era was R8.

Global Market accessories from Chicago

on Monday, 20 December 2010. Posted in Objects

Thought-provoking contemporary designs that tell a world originated story.

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Gold leaf is gold that has been hammered into extremely thin sheets and is used for gilding.
Gold Leaf Design Group is an accessory company that offers standard line products as well as custom solutions. The products are made mostly of natural materials used in innovative way. There is no signature look to these accessories, they are rather touched by inspiration from various corners of the world, with flourishing ethnic & folklore heritage. Company's idea is to create simple, visually pleasing products, packed with texture and handcrafted qualities. The collections feature original art, outdoor accents and planters, food-safe serving ware and creative tabletop decor, utilizing reclaimed and re-purposed components.

Hand made in New York

on Sunday, 28 November 2010. Posted in Objects

It has been countless number of times I have looked at the perfect imagery of Hudson's website and I got inspired. Now, the new Hudson Furniture 2011 catalog is out.

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Hudson's expansion in last 4 years eventuate in focus on the hospitality market. Simple yet striking designs are perfectly suitable for today's hotel and restaurant spaces; being trendsetters in life style targeting very specific client. Lucky consumers witness the highest excellence, an exhibit of "haut design", which therefore might become a preferred destination of their choice for future visits. I admire owners and operators of these functional spaces who don't compromise their clients' experience to comfort the cleaning stuff instead. The visionaries understand that need for beauty is ubiquitous in human nature and hardwired into our brains. While I'm looking at the new Hudson's pendant "Dragon 2011", Plato's words come to my mind; "Beauty ensnares hearts, captures minds, and stirs up emotional wildfires". Hudson Furniture Inc. respects the natural forms of trees and inherent grain of wood with well defined organic lines and geometric forms using traditional joinery techniques and hand rubbed oil finishes. All Hudson furniture is available in a variety of wood species such as Claro Walnut, Black Walnut, Myrtle, Jasmine, Acacia, Satinwood and Ebonized Pine. Here is the green part of the story; none of the woods they use are harvested from old growth forests. The wood slabs are domestically sourced from either salvaged trees or wind/storm damaged trees. The trees have an average life span of 250-300 years. When these trees die, they gradually do so from the crest to the roots. The farmers or the tree owners thus have to remove these trees as they might cause damage to houses, other trees or outlying areas. Hudsdon integrates various wood species into their designs to produce unique works of art.  "Hudson Furniture Inc. has also recently added a line of solid walnut furniture designs by startchitects Renzo Piano, Mario Botta and Terry Dwan".

Tokyo Designers Week 2010

on Tuesday, 16 November 2010. Posted in Objects

The theme of the 25th Tokyo Design Week that ended first week in November, was "Environment."

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The term “environment” was regarded on not just from the perspective of ecological environment concerning issue but in a more holistic way; including conditions of the mind and the body. The emphasis of this years event was on the assumption that revolutionary movement for the environment will not occur unless all parties of the society including companies, government, media, creators and private citizens work together. The belief is that design and art posses the power to bring all elements together to change the behavior and tendencies of society. One of the exhibitors was designer Tokujin Yoshioka with genuine interpretation of this philosophy. Yoshioka explains his concept substantialized in transparent phone called X-Ray Mobil. “Socially, transparency has a great buzz nowadays. Our global behavior of indulgence, greed and lack of concern for conservation has brought us to a pivotal time of fear, uncertainty and lack of trust. Transparency implies openness, communication and accountability. We have seen transparency being implemented by governments through efforts to establish trust with the people.”  Tokujin Yoshioka, native of Japan, has worked on many projects with Issey Miyake for nearly 20 years. His installations, lighting, furniture and product designs have been highly evaluated as works of art more than design works. One of the memorable designs from his studio is the "Bouquet Chair" designed for Moroso, introduced in 2008 at The Milan Furniture Fair.

Arktura - Design & Manufacturing innovation from LA

on Friday, 12 November 2010. Posted in Objects

The focus of the company stems from the belief that great design cannot be created without a close integration with the process of manufacture.

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Since the moment our local sales rep brought the Arktura catalogue to the office, I was trying to make time to enjoy flipping page by page and study the graceful lines of the pictured designs. The images are resembling ultra modern European style in combination with Japanese minimalism but made in the USA, with resonating sustainable efforts. The majority of the products are made using durable long-lasting materials with high recycled content that produce zero landfill waste; and, at the end of their life cycle are fully recyclable. The finishes release no toxins during application or in site. The presentation binder has the cover made out of the cartboard. “Our firm is committed to energy sustainability through solar and wind power”. The LA based team of designers with reputable experience have done a successful step in getting out of the comfort zone and left behind the eclecticism common in the US residential and small scale commercial market. These designs are asking for public exposure and debate not just due the striking color selection and glossy finishes but by the geometric precision, balance and simplicity of each form resulting from the close focus on the integration of design, with the development of new manufacturing technologies. “This way design and manufacture take on a new synergies, setting our designers free to explore new forms and use materials unseen in the industry”. Designers involved have professional degrees with practice of national and international exposure and we hope their determination to deliver extraordinary pieces that set new standards for creativity and innovation is infinite.

Budri - World made of marble inlay emotions

on Thursday, 11 November 2010. Posted in Spaces

In recent years Budri has established itself as a leader in Europe and the number-two company in the world when it comes to production capacity in the Marble Inlay and Mosaic sector.

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Hands that work, cut, compose, hands that smooth and finish, hands driven by the passion and the enthusiasm to draw a pattern and transform it into a stone reality. Budri is Italian artistic talent with expertise. The company was founded by Enzo Budri in the 60s and brings to the market the most sophisticated designs and technologies in marble design. Once the unique marble inlays and mosaics have been completed observer can clearly distinguish them from industrial products that have been produced in series. The latest masterpieces from Budri were displayed during the Salone del Mobile 2010 in Milan showcasing some of the most remarkable works by internationally famous designers and marble companies. The installation that received most of the media attention was designed by Patricia Urquiola for Budri called “Macrosterias”. Installation represented the metamorphic use of marbles and stones of different origins. The designer used traditional colors and modern patterns in combination with the ancient Italian craftsmanship. The project arose from the observation of vegetal micro-organisms – micrasterias – whose forms mixed with graphic symbols create a new digital-biological entity. It is almost hard to imagine stepping on such fantasy driven floor design that interacts with the viewer’s imagination after just a short exposure to it and brings one to dream world of Alice in Wonderland.

Aqua creations at The Sleep Event 2010 in London, UK

on Wednesday, 10 November 2010. Posted in Objects

Organic and fluid forms, rhythm and harmony of line and color, sensuality of materials and softness of light, are some of the key features that characterize their work.

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Aqua is known for its unique center pieces in hospitality projects. Just to mention few examples from their portfolio; Millenium Hilton – Bangkok Thailand,  MGM Mirage Casino – Las Vegas Nevada, The Excelsior Hotel – Thessaloniki Greece. For this year’s The Sleepotel Lounge at the Sleep Event 2010 in London UK, they teamed up with interior designers and architects from Design LSM to create a lounge driven by the imagination. “By sponsoring the lounge of the Sleepotel at the Sleep Event we are taking a different approach to display our designs at an Exhibition”. This event is Europe's premier exhibition for the design, architecture and development of hotels. Aqua is also planning to showcase their portfolio of celebrated, timeless favorites designed by designer Ayala Serfaty, who cofounded the atelier with photographer Albi Serfaty in 1994 in Tel Aviv. The traditional handcraft techniques with advanced lighting technology has put Aqua Creations in the forefront of sustainable design. The handmade imprimatur still remains, as Aqua Creations' skilled artisans continue to work on each piece individually, ensuring they are works of art as well as products of design.

Canvas opening store in Soho, NYC

on Monday, 08 November 2010. Posted in Spaces

The house of the signature Chesterfield sofa has opened its first stand alone flagship boutique store on the corner of Lafayette and Broome in New York City.

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Canvas goods are combination of natural materials with interesting textures. Unstructured, soft shapes and subtle colors define a look that is understated yet elegant. Canvas continuously aims for a collection that represents simple, sustainable style made under fair trade and green principles. Canvas also gives back 10% of everything they make to help artisans in the developing world. They claim that: "There’s nothing like helping people create sustainable businesses in order to make a meaningful dent in poverty and boost their confidence and self-respect. For Canvas, it's not just sourcing the goods the right way, it's also designing them the right way. Everything is designed and made with love, so that you can delight in our products for a very long time to come."

Did You Know?

Glass can be recycled indefinitely.

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The purpose of art is:

intellectual stimulation - 100%
sensory pleasure - 0%

Total votes: 5
The voting for this poll has ended on: 15 Nov 2011 - 00:00

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