Design and visual arts magazine Sight Unseen will stage a second exhibition at New York’s Collective Design fair on May 4 to 8. Curated by founders Monica Khemsurov and Jill Singer, the show features work from four emerging American design firms: Bower x Studio Proba, Chris Wolston, Fort Makers, and Only Love Is Real. The latter will show, for the first time, a collection of lighting and furniture, displayed against custom wall paper by Designtex.
As a go-to space for emerging trends in contemporary design, Sight Unseen’s exhibition delivers on the promise implicit in its name. See below for details on each studio’s presentation:
Bower x Studio Proba
Studio Proba and Bower teamed up to unleash Zendo, a furniture collection that draws on the themes of water, transcendence, and reflection to ensconce users in a “multi-sensory,” but calm, environment. Users can listen to the gurgling Pivot fountain while lounging on the Nirvana rug, or the Waterline chair, and contemplating the meaning of life in the multicolored Water mirrors.
Brooklyn- and Medellin-based designer Chris Wolston combines traditional production technique with contemporary, high-tech materials. For the Collective Design fair, Wolston sand-casted aluminum foam sheeting that’s typically used in architectural sound-proofing to create sculpted lighting, tables, and seating.
Only Love Is Real
OLIR founder Matthew Morgan synthesizes the geometry of Sol LeWitt and Milo Baughman’s 1980s-era étagères to create shelving units that reference the precision of the latter with the glam but barely functional nature of the former. Every angle of his pieces is divisible by three, a comment on harmony, consistency, and structure.
Fort Makers will showcase a new group of usable, riotously colorful, geometric sculpture. The wallpaper mural dialogues with the maple furniture, like a desk with an oval glass top and accompanying modular shelving unit. Hand-painted canvas, in the same pattern as the mural, is incorporated into square and rectangular seating units.