Thursday, 18 April 2013

A second chance at beauty, by Pepe Heykoop

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Pepe Heykoop's work is sublime. Every peice of his work is a one-off hand-made original that explodes with character. If furniture could exude a strong personality and leave a distinct presence in a room then, in my opinion, Pepe Heykoop's work does exactly that. Simply said, it is far more than furniture, it is art. What Pepe Heykoop creates serves not only a functional purpose but is born out of a true creative concept.

The artist's website boasts an impressive selection of work that one can get pretty lost in, pretty quickly. So here I've chosen three of his collections to show you the marvel that is his way of working, the collections Bits of Wood 1 and Bits of Wood 2, as well as the Skin Collection.

True to their names, the Bits of Wood collections are made of recycled pieces of wood. Bits of Wood 1 (last five photos) is a series of tables and stools made from wooden cut-offs whereby various pieces are modified to fit into a mould held together by molten tin. No screws or glue are used in the construction. The wooden pieces used are leftovers from a local sawmill, and the tin comes from a metal recycling department where old tin pots and plates are collected. The surface of these beautiful pieces gives away the production method. 

Similarly Bits of Wood 2 (first three photos) is comprised of square stools which are composed by puzzling together leftover pieces of hardwood, also from the local sawmill. The seats are tightened up in a frame finished off with knobs of pewter. And lastly, the Skin Collection, consisting of sculptural pieces createded by using off-cuts of discarded leather that other furniture makers have thrown away due to he natural markings or scratches on the animal's skin.

I love these pieces because they're rebellious, rugged, sexy and every one is genuinely unique. There has been a true consideration given to how the user will perceive each product from various angles, and in turn each angle has been given its own aesthetic importance and true sculptural attention. If these pieces were human, they'd certainly be someone I'd want to grab a drink with.

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)


Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Furniture by Pepe Heykoop. Photography by Annemarijne Bax (via Nest of Pearls)

Source - pepe heykoop
Images courtesy of - pepe heykoop
Photography by - annemarijne bax

Friday, 12 April 2013

The deliriously inviting Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

The photography of this project is so undoubtedly juicy and fresh that my first thoughts were 'WOW, what a funky apartment', but in actual fact it's more than that. It's a swanky and chic guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Cutely named the Miss'Opo guesthouse, it's concoction comes from a true desire to merge travellers with locals, to creatively inspire everyone who steps through the door, and to create a very unique and interactive environment that is warm both visually and physically. And when I say warm I refer to the glorious deep mahogany colours that are embodied in the wall treatment, in the charmingly chosen furniture pieces, as well as in the quirky accessories, such as the bike seats and the blouses suspended in mid-air to create an air of theatricality.

I also love the attention to detail in terms of the guest's journey and movement through the space. The living, kitchen and general common areas are busy with fun, colour and laughter so that your creativity is fed at every intersection of man and interior. Then once you retreat into the guest bedroom, the mood is calmer, softer, less colourful. This is where you align all the creative inspiration collected from previous spaces within the Miss'Opo guesthouse and delve into creating your own ideas. Lucky, then, that the bed has a little nook that can house the art diaries and travel journals of visiting creative minds.     
Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Miss'Opo Guesthouse in Porto, Portugal. Photography by Shanna Jones (via Nest of Pearls))

Source - yatzer via ideas to steal
Images courtesy of - yatzer
Photography by - shanna jones

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Bikini Island debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

With the ultimate design event of all design events having kicked off yesterday, I think it's only fair that we feast our hungry eyes on some of the wonderful and juicy newbies and gems that will be exhibited there over the next week. I am, of course, referring to the world famous Milan Furniture Fair, or as it's known in its Italian mother tongue, the Salone Internazionale del Mobile. Deeply and unashamedly envious of all who are there in person, I'm closely following friends, colleagues and bloggers who happen to be sending in live feeds as the days unfold.

Ok, so let's transport ourselves there, even if for a moment. Let me introduce you to one hot and funky furniture line that will be debuting at this year's fair. Bikini Island, by award winning German designer Werner Aisslinger, will be debuting as part of the Moroso collection. Designed with the modern rhythm of life in mind, the collection's designer explains that Bikini Island is an evolution in how we inhabit space. It is a step forward from the unidirectional sofas that made interaction with the television set a paradise, but interaction with each other dry and sometimes non-existant. 

This thinking is so spot on!! We very recently purchased a new sofa for our Sydney abode, and I have to say, it wasn't easy. We came across a huge number of couches and sofas that were one-directional and made lazying together on the couch boring and uncomfortable. In the end, through our love of design and perseverance we did land on the right, over-sized, gorgeously comfy, pillow overflowing L-shaped sofa. But damn, it seems that they're still thinking of the TV when designing furniture rather than human interaction. 

In a short interview with StyleparkWerner Aisslinger goes on to explain that his inspiration for the Bikini Island was the new way of living, one often defined by wireless tablets, smart-phones and devices that allow us to be mobile, flexible, and forever on the move, rather than rigid, stationary and facing in one direction. The pieces that make up the Bikini Islands are all movable, swivel-able, and free to live as part of the bunch or be used alone. The modularity of the design is incredibly fun and modern, and the zesty choice of colours add a definite 'I want this NOW' factor. 

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

Bikini Island by Werner Aisslinger, debuting at Milan Furniture Fair 2013 (via Nest of Pearls)

Source - stylepark & aisslinger, via fastcodesign
Images courtesy of - fastcodesign

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

The incredible Hidden Orchestra, by Alice Labourel

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

Every now and then I write a post that motivates me and fires me up so much that I get my partner involved by very excitedly and passionately explaining to him my latest find. This is one of those posts...

These could very possible be the best, most imaginative architectural drawings I've seen in a long time. In fact, the last time I probably saw drawings this inspiring was at university where, as students of Interior Architecture, we had no limits, everything was possible, and our imaginations danced freestyle. Having said that, however, at a student level I never came across anything as sophisticated as the work featured today. It is exceptional and gob-smackingly well executed.

The illustrator of these extravagantly creative and intelligent ideas is a young French graduate student by the name of Alice Labourel. Studying architecture at Ecole Sp├ęcial d'Architecture in Paris, Alice Labourel's project is called The Hidden Orchastra, a building designed to be a dance school. It is an incredible concept that, as part of the structure of the building, takes into consideration three different entities, the movement of the dancers, the flow of the river below the building's site, and the rhythm of the trains that periodically pass by the building. These three elements all influence the building in that they cause it to move and sway as it constantly and continuously reflects the life in and around its structure.

For me personally, this type of thinking is a signature of someone who was born to be an architect. The approach is one born out of a determined fearlessness to imagine a different world, one that dares to concoct a way to challenge conventions, and, moreover, is married with an incredibly mature illustrative talent that allows the architect to depict that which harbours in their imagination. I love these drawings, they simply take my breath away and I can look at the details for hours on end. Am I wrong to admit that Alice Labourel's work reminds me of Lebbeus Woods' work? Maybe, but I'd be lying if I said it wasn't so...

I invite you to read Alice Labourel's own description of her work for a more in-depth understanding of her thought process. I also recommend that you read the original article on the Dezeen blog. This article is particularly interesting because there are reader comments that are quite strongly either for or against Alice Labourel's extravagant and original thinking. Through these comments I realise in what a controlled and ordered world we live in and the fear we have of questioning the status quo. But this is my personal feeling, please feel free to leave me your own comments and thoughts.

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

The Hidden Orchestra by Alice Labourel (via NEST OF PEARLS)

Source - Dezeen
Images via - Alice Labourel