Month: January, 2013

A congratulations for Nanimarquina! …

We never tire of our suppliers’ international success. We are proud to bring to you the recipient of the 2013 Wallpaper* Design Awards – Best Domestic Design Rug Collection Award – Nanimarquina for the “Collage 1966” collection! Judged by a plethora of international creatives such as Rick Owens, Wang Shu, Julian Opie, Oki Sato, Ferran Adria and Farida Khelfa, the exciting award is well deserved.

We featured the Nanimarquina graphic rug collection based on the work of Spain’s Eduardo Chillida on the blog here. The collection is available at KE-ZU, see more information here.

Well done Nanimarquina!

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Illuminat(re)e …

Ross Lovegrove, revered industrial designer and visionary is renowned for his flowing and organic inspired designs (some of which for suppliers bd Urban Transit and Bernhardt Design are available at KE-ZU) and has a passion for sustainability and forward thinking:

…everything around is ( … ) open to new interpretation, we have gone to see a big physical change in our collective environment worldwide, we have to because of the issues of sustainability and efficiency.  Efficiency will drive everything; materials, form, ideas… efficiency will be the big one and efficiency exists in science and biology and all of that but it also needs to exist in design without being dried out or boring…

Lovegrove’s work in 2007 titled quite simply “Solar Tree” is almost exactly how it sounds, however it’s not that simple.  Solar Tree is a revolutionary urban lighting project which incorporates advanced solar technology respecting important environmental issues and acknowledging cultural and social aspects of our current community living requirements.

Solar Tree finds its form in a series of gracefully twisted steel pipes representing a tree, each pipe supporting a cluster of LED lights at its peak which are illuminated using 38 solar cells which connect to a battery system hidden in the base of the structure.  The entire structure is then illuminated in public domains, omitting the need for other sources of power such as electricity or battery.

Interestingly, through its solar cells Solar Tree collects more power than is needed to generate the light source, and therefore possesses the capacity to power more than just itself.  Lovegrove envisages options of perhaps selling energy back to the grid and incorporating outlets to charge electronic devices, obviously the potential in this vein could extend even further.

Lovegrove was interviewed on CNN about Solar Tree and sustainability.  You can see the interview here – don’t forget to take note of Ross’ “Bubble Car” – his idea for solar transportation in the future – cool!

With Europe placing Solar Trees in Vienna, Milan, Paris and Frankfurt – the Solar Tree is a remarkable step in the right direction from a master designer and thinker.

Lovegrove’s other projects can be seen on his website.

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Wood you look at that …

There are many ways to go green, not all of them positive – let’s think shall we… there’s green with envy, green around the gills but perhaps you could just go ahead and get sustainable.

This isn’t going to turn into an essay about the need for sustainability and thinking more eco-consciously… it’s going to be a DIY piece about up-cycling pallets in interesting and fun ways.

With their strength, practical shape and ability to take on any colour with a simple lick of a paintbrush – these humble transport utilities can become something useful and a thing of joy – and even have a bit of fun doing it in the process!

Check out some of our favourite creative adaptations below.

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Tying the Knot …

Knottee is the newest creation by Kenneth Cobonpue for Hive [design by hive].

Handmade using synthetic fibre, Knottee is a woven piece available as either suspension or a floor lamp.  This vogue piece is available with the option of being specified with a wide, grey middle band and slimmer olive outer strips or the reverse: olive middle band with grey outer strips.

Taking a new direction away from the natural products of the Hive catalogue, the Knottee provides a comfortable home-made feel, bearing two decorative knitting needles strewn at the top of the lighting piece.

Knottee is perfect for both indoor and outdoor use, and the suspension model is available for viewing at the KE-ZU showroom.

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FFF – Outside In…

We’ve previously featured caravans on this blog, that one came in the form of an amazing food truck doing the rounds of San Francisco.

Without fear of becoming known as a blog of the travelling wheels, today we’d like to bring to you a truly unique hotel which has found itself in Berlin, arguably the worlds capital of what’s-cool-right-now.

By name it’s known as the ‘Huttenplast’ which translates to “Hut Palace”.  It’s accommodation which houses caravans inside its rooms providing the comfort of an upmarket hotel with the fun of camping.  Something for everyone really.

The hotel is styled to resemble a typical camping style, with outdoor areas, some trees and communal lounge areas outside your door; all with the comfort of being inside!  Cool huh?!

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A little KE-ZU Giveaway-day! …

KE-ZU was proud to again partner with YellowTrace, celebrating their third anniversary by co-sponsoring the YellowTrace reader survey by offering the Jaime Hayon designed vase from the Showtime Collection for bd Barcelona.  The lucky winner we are pleased to announce is David Caon – Sydney based designer – well done David!

The Loot!

The winner!

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INSTALLED: East Hotel Canberra

Some may say our Nation’s Capital has little drawcards.  The new East Hotel, nestled in the grooviest quarter of Canberra stylishly refutes such a claim.

Turning away from the dreary neutral tones of hotels of times past, the East Hotel drowns itself in contemporary styling, artfully pieced by Sydney’s Sally Hieatt (Sally Hieatt Interiors).

The East Hotel is a dense fusion of shape and colour, the lobby being the perfect platform to showcase product from Spain’s design gurus Sancal.  Littering the floor is the Folk Sofa, Tea Lounge, Soul Lounge Chair and Rock Tables (many of which GECA Certified) and Axona Aichi’s Tipo Chairs in the meeting room.

With such good design available, perhaps now there’s no better reason to head to the Capital.

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FFF – Craig and Karl …

We are absolutely loving Craig and Karl.

“Who are Craig and Karl?” you may say.  Well, Craig and Karl (their self-portraits above and below) are friends who live in different parts of the world, Craig in New York City and Karl in London.  They are illustrators specialising in installation who collaborate daily on work creating bold and fun graphic work which is often communicated in a humorous way.

Their work is highly stylished yet holds an intriguing simplicity which quickly becomes their obvious trademark.

They’ve worked with Apple, LVMH, Nike, Apple, Vogue and the New York Times on graphic pieces – still managing to maintain a visual style they can call their own.   Their work has extended to Sydney also – with identity work for restaurants, illustration for markets and even graphic representation of their Sydney studio (can you figure out the iconic Sydney building?).

Working in all manner of medium, their portfolio which is a dense tale of successful work is available here.

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56th Studio …

56th Studio is the multi-disciplinary Bangkok based design studio which is emitting some quirky and rather sensational ‘sarcastic commentary’ pieces working with chairs, wall décor, fabric, pillows and handbags.  Excitingly, they follow the mantra of “form follows story” – and you’ll see how!

The design trio behind the studio combines entrepreneurial skills with design, marketing and graphic degrees, they describe their style position as “luxe-personified yet kitschy, neo-ethnic, eclectically bold and youthful” – and nothing could be further from the truth.  Their varied skills and education shows through their use of materiality, print and scale.

The relatively fresh creative triangle exhibited at Maison et Objet Paris and Salone Internazionale del Mobile di Milano at Spazio Rossana Orlandi (a sarcastic comment in itself) with their “Cheap Ass” collection (above), a communicative seating collection of juxtaposed form and materiality which combines household items with richer elements which they note for the larger model:

…all asses including J:Lo style are welcome

Each of their collections contains a story – fabrics based on the discography of The Beatles (note Strawberry Fields, Come Together and Across the Universe) above, the “Familiar Faces” collection – a print set of icons throughout the ages, and their “Caricature as Furniture” collection – whittling down well-known facets from figures of pop culture and rebirthing them as functional chairs.  In their sights were Harry Potter, Lady Gaga and Naomi Campbell and the entire Simpsons family… all pretty fun for the dining table, for the whole family!

Head over to their website to see their entire portfolio for their individual and seriously fun graphic and object design.

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Sapey So Good…

Teresa Sapey, the talented Italian architect, interior and industrial designer has our attentions today, and not only because of the abundance of interesting and quirky photographs of herself, or her enviable design mantra:

It is to move emotions that I work with spaces, I’d go for provoking just about any kind of feeling, no matter what it is (…whether like or dislike, I do not really care).  From my personal point of view, architecture should provide a varied range of sentiments to be considered both inspiring and useful

Sapey is quite the fascinating character.  The Italian born talent was educated in various parts of the world including the prestigious Parsons School of Design.  Sapey’s career is a cocktail of interesting, smart and invariably aesthetically pleasing work.

The multi-faceted creative appears to attain Midas-touch like abilities to every project she sets sinks her teeth into.  Working in the fields of architecture, interior design, installations and furniture design, all of her work bears the aesthetic Sapey stamp of playing with highly saturated colour and pattern – in turn making spaces vibrant and a whole lot of fun.

Her workings with plastics, including her teachings of Plastic Investigations internationally have laid an easy path to many collaborations on projects with Spanish manufacturer Vondom including recently launched Adan, outdoor vase, light and table and Chrismy, the illuminated Christmas tree in various sizes, together with previously Chemistubes, outdoor vase and light – all of which are available at KE-ZU.

Recently, Sapey was invited to be one of 18 architects (including current greats such as John Pawson, Zaha Hadid and Jean Nouvel) working collaboratively on the Hotel Puerta América Project, a hotel in Madrid, each part of the hotel being designed by a different architect, Sapey designing the carparking – the outcome far more interesting than it may initially sound.

Sapey’s foray into the design world is evident of a truly talented artist.  But don’t just believe us, the magnificent 57 page online portfolio is testament to such a visionary – you can find it here. Her catalogue available at KE-ZU is available here.

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