Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Design Fairs | NYC, ICFF at the Convention Center

Spring is in full bloom, so is ICFF, the 22nd annual International Contemporary Furniture Fair at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City.

I have always enjoyed the fresh and innovative ideas, research on new materials often presented by the ICFF exhibitors, especially when compared to the usual stiffness and staleness of the recent current architectural projects in NYC.

The usual presence of established manufacturers --- such as Bernarhdt Design, Herman Miller, Kohler, Wilsonart --- is accompanied by a multitude of designers and schools, including Parson, the New School for Design, Pratt Institute, Yale School of Architecture. Particularly interesting among the design school is Art Future Design School from Russia, presenting furniture created from common Russian iconic objects, as matryoska.

"Green" and nature are the again the buzzwords in materials and design, often just used as cliché and quite questionable. Where is the sustainability of reclaimed wood imported from Asia ---what about transportation? And what is natural and sustainable in the recreation of trees, branches and flowers in steel and plastic?

Quite interesting ---although not new--- is the Canadian Molo line of products realized in non-woven polyethylene material, trade name Tyvek©. From modular walls to LED lighting this extremely lightweight material offers a very interesting vocabulary of forms.

Finally I found particularly of interest ---probably as related to my upcoming book on architectural geometry (to be published by Bentley Institute Press)--- the MGX by Materialise: functional and sculptural object realized in 3d-printing.

One missing element from the green + sustainability shebang: the human body.

Well, enough words; below a few images .

Tyvek© Walls and Lighting by Molo

3d Printing in Lighting Fixture by MGX by Materialise

LG Seating

LED Lightinh by QisDesign