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Stellar Works’ East-West Dialogue

Shanghai-based Stellar Works sees itself as the first global furniture design brand from Asia, and has been building its presence steadily since its founding in 2012. In Milan this year, the brand presented a major installation in the Tortona district.

Stellar Works’ East-West Dialogue

Mandarin Collection by Neri&Hu

Stellar Works’ Tortona installation was designed by the brand’s Creative Director Neri&Hu, and contained new products by Neri&Hu, Space Copenhagen, Yabu Pushelberg and Crème along with Steller Works’ first objects collection – a selection of Arita ceramics designed by Neri&Hu.

The new products were exhibited in a ‘space within a space’ – a nostalgic wooden house-like structure within an existing building. A walkway wrapped around the structure offering viewpoints of the collection through carefully placed apertures. The aim was to create the scenography of an East-West cultural dialogue through the choreography of materials, space, light and colours.

Neri&Hu’s new Mandarin Collection – chairs, a bench and a large 2,400 x 900mm dining table – emphasises a balance between classical Asian furniture forms and mid-century aesthetics. Says Lyndon Neri, “We have looked at typologies of classic furniture designs and have translated these into the design of a table and chairs following Asian design typologies: the sphere which symbolises the temple of Heaven versus the square form represented by the temple of Earth.” The chairs and bench epitomise the mix with their upholstered fiberglass seats.

The Arita Collection of ceramics blurs the typologies of plates and bowls, thereby extending the functional possibilities of each item. The vessels in the collection are also non-specific in function. The collection was produced in Arita, Japan using 400-year-old techniques.

Brooklyn-based design studio Crème (directed by Jun Aizaki) created the Exchange Collection – an extension to the wood and steel Exchange Chair of 2016. The chair was inspired by the traditional Windsor form, with steel replacing the typical wooden spindles. The new collection comprises a dining chair, lounge chair with cushion, high-back chair, two seater, Bar chairs and dining table.

Danish designers Space Copenhagen created the Slow Collection of upholstered wooden furniture, drawing inspiration from a chair they designed for restaurant 108 in Copenhagen. Say the designers, “We often use the term ‘slow aesthetic’ to describe the intention of our work. One of the aims for this collection has been to design a series of organic shaped, sculptural and long-lasting furniture. Curious about the future, [the collection] still embraces the qualities of refined detailing, comfort and craftsmanship. The collection also celebrates the feel of a slow pace – of leaning back, hanging out and enjoying life.”

American design studio Yabu Pushelberg extended its Blink Collection with playful pieces that lend themselves to residential and commercial contexts: a lounge chair, dining chair, vanity stool, stone and wood-topped tables, and a mirrored screen. “There is an inherent sweetness and happiness to the Blink Collection that is instantly perceptible,” say Yabu Pushelberg. The designers continue, “Based on forms that are light, sculptural and playful, there is a naïve quality to the collection that is balanced with clarity of form and simple materials”.

In Singapore, Stellar Works is available at P5.

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