Revealed earlier this month in Milan, Sawaya & Moroni‘s New Collection 2011 includes pieces from high profile architects Daniel Libeskind, Zaha Hadid, and Dominique Perrault. William Sawaya and Paolo Moroni, founding partners of Sawaya & Moroni, focus the production of their furniture on contemporary designs intertwined with differing cultural backgrounds, resulting in unique pieces and a selective group of architects and artists. Ben van Berkel of UNStudio also presented new furniture this month in Milan. More about the chairs after the break.
Inspired by the Altair star, one of the closest stars visible to the naked eye, and the brightest star in the constellation Aquila, the Altair Chair is the latest chair designed by Daniel Libeskind. The chair combines seating comfort with the discipline of highly abstract geometries that were studied to shape the posture of the body and its seating position, creating a chair that is both uniquely comfortable and strikingly elegant.
The Altair Chair has a crystalline structure made of stainless steel plates, bearing 11 facets, 9 folds and 7 welded joints. Its distinct geometry is enriched by the unique finishing of the stainless steel plates. Each chair is individually cut from a metal plate, folded and welded in exact locations and polished through both a hand and machine process that applies thinner and thinner abrasive cream on all joints to bring out a smooth texture while maintaining the original look and touch of the raw steel. The luminosity of the chair is thus derived from the brilliance of the pure metal. The chair is to be viewed in 360 degrees; its mirrored surfaces give each elevation a different light, reflection, and shadow.
The design of the Z-Chair Chair summarizes the essence of contemporary design and the research developed by Zaha Hadid Architects over the last three decades. A simple three-dimensional gesture zigzags in the space as part of the continued discourse between form and function, elegance and utility, differentiation and continuity. Geometric abstractions inform the design’s linear loop, which is articulated along its path in a language that alternates thin wire streams and large surfaces to provide both ergonomic affordances and inherent stability to the overall shape. The dichotomy between the elegance of the composition and its articulation is negotiated through a subtle play of contrasting angular corners and wide, smooth curves. The resulting form echoes the calligraphic gestures of Hadid’s two-dimensional works; a controlled brush stroke on a canvas, the perfect synthesis of an idea: the sketch.”
One effect of sustainable development is the appearance of new living rooms in our homes. Whether those homes are apartments or penthouses, with huge loggias or a tiny terrace, they are being transformed into pleasant, protected places of relation between indoors and outdoors. These new spaces call for a kind of outdoor design furnishing that is equally at home indoors. The Leo Leonis Collection draws its inspiration from the colonial furnishings that populate the verandas of large houses. These armchairs and sofas were very comfortable: you could sit in them to read, to smoke and also to doze. You could also move them around to take advantage of the plentiful good weather by the swimming pool or under a tree, but also bring them indoors to double as a living room sofa in the stormy season.
The collection’s silhouette is inspired by the heavenly constellations that are only legible when they are related to one another. What these forms and their movements have is not geometric rigour, but astronomic precision. The weave of the wood introduces this motion of rough garden furnishing to accompany a natural fabric of colour or a wood-fabric monochrome.