1 Fredrikson Stallard’s Gravity, at David Gill Gallery, London
Species (pictured) may look as hard as volcanic rock but it is hand-carved out of polyurethane foam with a brilliant purple velvet coat. The piece is one of a series created over the last few years by London’s Patrik Frederikson and Ian Stallard, who have been collaborating on perceptual fusions like Species since the mid-90s. Their products are as much sculptures as they are bespoke furniture.
The series also includes a clear acrylic coffee table that visually chanels moving water or ice, and a console that looks like a sheet of crumpled aluminum. “The new is not the materials we are using or the technology,” the duo have said of their work in the past. “What is new is seeing furniture and sculpture as the very same thing. Without technology we could not do what we do.” On view until April 9, at David Gill Gallery, 2-4 King Street, London
2 Maarten Baas’s Carapace at Carpenters Workshop Gallery, New York
The Dutch designer’s inspiration for his latest suite of limited-edition pieces, called Carapace, comes from two sources: an admiration for those refrigerators of the 1950s that sported soft round corners and slightly puffed up silhouettes; and the hard-cover shells that protect such living creatures as beetles, turtles and armadilos.
Baas, who is best known for torching wooden furniture to a crisp patina of black char, has crafted for this collection an armchair, a desk, a cupboard, a small and wide cabinet, each clad in a tough outer layer of patchwork bronze plating, dot-welded into place. “It’s important to have a hard layer under which something good and fruitful can bloom,” he says. On view until April 30 at Carpenters Workshop Gallery, 693 5th Ave, New York
3 Martino Gamper’s 100 Chairs in 100 Days, at RMIT Design in Melbourne
The Italian designer’s touring exhibition has landed in Melbourne this month, and with it one of the 100 chairs that make up the show has been swapped out and replaced with a chair made from debris Gamper found in the exhibit’s host city. The premise behind 100 Chairs in 100 Days is to show the results of Gamper’s self-imposed creative challenge of designing one chair a day, and to build each one out of chair parts that have been discarded.
The culmination of seeing all 100 chairs – Frankenstein versions of familiar designs of the past half-century – reveals something about the place where they were made. “Every country or city has a particular way of designing and manufacturing,” Gamper says. “I start on the street, and work with the chairs people have rejected. That gives you an idea of what’s out there. It gives you a feel for the place.” On view until April 9 at RMIT Design, Building 100, Corner Victoria and Swanston Streets, Carlton, Australia