Greenhouse, the Stockholm Furniture Fair’s showcase of graduate and new designers, usually includes every iteration of the humble chair you could possibly imagine – and more. This year proved to be no exception – but the strongest stand (above) was one which refused to show any furniture at all…
Clara Costes’ Hortus combines cabinetry with greenhouse design to create space for a tiny indoor garden, bringing us closer to nature.
Acorn by Kira Jang Usbeck and Camilla Holm Pallesen (of Denmark’s VIA Design & Business School) is a laundry bag with a difference – unusually attractive and made from super-sustainable cork, it also takes up minimal space in your bathroom.
“Creating objects is like playing with the forces of nature at scale,” says Dutch designer David Dirksen, who is a regular in Milan, but was exhibiting for the first time in Stockholm. His Neolith Pendants, made in collaboration with Johan van Hengel, appear to defy gravity – the seemingly heavy solid slabs of slate and marble are in fact hollow.
K-Series is Gellért Ollé’s degree project from the Maholy-Nagy University of Art and Design in Budapest and is extruded in a single piece.
Design Nikolai Fabricius calls this piece ‘Life’ saying, “A piece of furniture should exist for the user and stand firmly on the ground, but can a chair be more than a piece of furniture? Can it have its own power, its own energy?”
The Hugging Chair by Mötus Lömaš Kama references Estonian folk heritage and specifically an introverted spirit known for transforming into stone whenever it wants to hide. The sitter can straddle the seat and face the spirit to give it a hug, or simply lean back into its presence.
Three blocks of wood, each with a piece of bent plywood inserted at a slightly different angle, create three entirely different sitting experiences. Posture X by Jenni Inciarte Villaverde is a study of seating transformed into sculpture and won Greenhouse’s ‘Best Performance.’
Alexandra Friberg is studying for a bachelor’s degree in Interior Architecture and Furniture Design at Sweden’s Konstfack and created the stand-out piece on their stand in this plaited leather chair.
Fiesta by Milla Grøm is the result of a form study and evolved out of a wheelchair for children designed to facilitate play. Grøm hopes to remove the stigma of wheelchair use by blurring the boundaries between furniture and assistive aids.
Maja Elmig Feuerlein’s Elephant Chair, apart from being delightfully anthropomorphic, offers a private space in which to meditate or simply take time out from a busy office – its tactile surfaces provide a grounding focus.
But by far the most powerful statement was from second-year design and sustainability students at Linne Universitetet who refused to show any products or furniture on their stand at all. “The world is burning and we are still making furniture,” explained a poster. Their space instead featured a series of newly coined words and images conceived to capture their difficult feelings towards climate change as well as the tripods used by protestors to create blockades.