David Amar is an artist and designer who has a storyteller’s approach, with an interest in layering the moments of a table. Here with the David table there is a central basket that hangs hidden below the middle, which is revealed as the table opens up. The fruit seems not just to be a weight that is carried on the table but as a tension force that’s pulling it together and balancing it out, especially when it is open and becomes an ensemble of four smaller interdependent one legged tables. Perhaps this is a deconstruction but I also see it as a poetic reconstruction.
May 15th, 2012 _ 0 comments _
December 14th, 2011 _ 1 comment _
Concerned with understanding and creating the design process, David Amar has created this table for which I can find no title but will call the OuLiPo table. OuLiPo means “Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle”, or workshop for potential Literature, (it is coincidentally the name of this blog’s template). OuLiPo is group of well known mathematicians and writers that give themselves rules by which they create a piece of writing. By following these rules unexpected pieces of work are created where the underlying pattern augments it’s beauty, what we commonly know as poetry. This methodology is what inspire David Amar and lead to this extraordinary result of following a given creative process.
May 17th, 2011 _ 0 comments _
Star of the show in Bon Marché at the moment is the misleadingly simple Arco table Nomad, designed by Jorre Van Ast. The first thing that I noticed about it was it’s pencil style legs with screw threads at the top for joining them to the table top. Normally this table top would need to be thick and heavy but when you stand over it the table top appears to be impossibly thin. Then look at it from a distance or sit down beside it and the sublime simple 3D bulge of it’s underbelly reveals itself. As you move around it the changes in direction of the lines in the oak veneer bring out this curve, without this it would be tricky to understand how the bump bulges. I imagine that while you’re sitting by this table your hands would spend quite a while stroking it’s underbelly.
It’s construction is pure woodsman rocket science. The legs are made of ash and the core is a cellulose honeycomb with balsa and poplar wood, and finally the aforementioned perfectly curved oak veneer. Tough and light, this highly mobile table has just the right measure of non-ostentatious sophistication for urbanites on the move.
May 10th, 2011 _ 0 comments _
Ai Weiwei is a Chinese artist, architect and activist who is probably best known for the Olympic bird’s nest stadium in Beijing that he designed with Herzog and de Meuron. This week he will have an important opening in the Lisson gallery in London . Unfortunately he is unlikely to attend as he has been “disappeared” by the Chinese authorities since April the 3rd. This is not the first time that this has happened, after a previous disappearance he required brain surgery as a result of his beatings. Many of Ai Weiwei’s entourage have also vanished.
His father Ai Quing was a much loved Chinese poet. At the age of one his family were sent to a labour camp for 16 years after Ai Quing and his wife were denounced for rightist activities. When he was twenty four years old Ai Weiwei went to New York only returning to Beijing when his father was ill. His father said to him when he was dying ,”China is your country, you don’t have to be polite.” These words were taken to heart. Like his father before him he has brought together politics and art. China, it’s people and their culture, is most central to his oeuvre. He takes a traditional element of Chinese culture, then rebuilds it through contemporary eyes.
The “furniture” series is crafted from valuable tables from the Ming and Quing dynasties. These were originally built using carpentry techniques where the pieces of wood are slotted together like a 3D puzzle. Daring to operate on such highly charged historical objects ,he had them taken apart by Chinese master craftsmen. Then he reconfigured them using the same joinery principles, creating new objects. Something that appears impossible because it defies expectations, yet highly plausible through it’s expert craftsmanship and a rich visual language.
These challenges to traditional space, is more about potential that certitudes and such is the fate of Ai Weiwei.