It’s day one of the annual Miami art and design fairs and The Architect’s Newspaper (AN) is back for another year. Today we are in the smaller Design Miami/ tent across the street from the gigantic Art Basel fair. This design fair is usually a mix of a few international prototypes by the world’s best designers, lots of frilly and useless baubles like beaded fantasy animals and chairs meant for adult children, and finally original pieces by classic designers like Jean Prouvé, Le Corbusier, George Nakashima, and even Gaetano Pesce. If one knows what they like, the entire fair can be seen in 30 minutes.
As in the past, the Design Miami/ tent is fronted by a small pavilion or folly, and this year SHoP Architects have created one of the best pavilions in recent memory. Titled Flotsam & Jetsam, SHoP worked to create the installation with Branch Technology, a Chattanooga-based fabrication firm, Dassault Systems, for project management, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, who provided a second 3D printing material technology (a biodegradable bamboo medium) for the surrounding seating. (Learn more about the installation, the largest 3D printed object in the world, in our prior coverage.) After Design Miami/, Flotsam & Jetsam will be reinstalled in the Miami Design District’s iconic Jungle Plaza to house an outdoor cultural event space for long-term public enjoyment. The space will be launched with the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami on December 1, 2017.
Inside the design tent, there was little that was new but a few items stood out: Konstantin Grcic’s limited edition chair/table he calls Hieronymus Minero in the Galerie Kreo booth, along with his glass and metal table with funny rubber wires coming from its black frame. The best lighting design came from The Future Perfect with their aptly named Floor Double Loop by designer Michael Anastassiades. Carpenters Workshop Gallery also showed a clever and beautiful glass ceiling light named Les Cordes by Mathieu Lehanneur.
Finally, South Africa’s Southern Guild presented their Num Num bronze and glass dining table. The standouts of the fair—and some are stunning—are the classic 20th century pieces and we will present them in a separate post.