Dreams cabinet designed by Cristian Zuzunaga for BD Barcelona.
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Sale starts Tuesday 27th January at 7.30am
Save on a huge range of designer indoor + outdoor furniture, lighting + accessories for the home, office + public spaces from international brands – Andreu World + Bernhardt Design + EMU + BD Barcelona + HIVE + Kenneth Cobonpue + Expormim + Lzf + M114 + Indecasa + Enea + Sancal
Visit us at the KE-ZU Pop-Up Store Monday to Friday 7.30am – 6pm and Saturdays 10am – 5pm – Suite 31, Level 1, 69 O’Riordan St Alexandria 2015
For any enquiries please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1300 724 174
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The Italian architect and designer, Ettore Sottsass was one of the first to collaborate with BD back in the 70’s, 10 years before he became famous on a worldwide scale with the mythic Memphis group. That’s when Sottsass travelled regularly to Barcelona and produced various designs for the Catalan editor. The first one was a table baptised with the name ‘Mettsass’ in 1972. He followed with an ash tray called “Manhattan” in ceramic and a glass vase called “Element of Architecture”, a lamp “Knossos” and another ceramic vase in pink, baptised with the name “Shiva”. It was in 1973 when BD had just been inaugurated and he symbolised it with a modern piece of fertility. The master’s genius and committed character were imprinted on the original catalogue for this iconic piece, which BD continues to produce even today. In 2005, two years before Sottsass’ death, a gold prototype was made and was an award for an international competition for students of design. This is the very same one that Sottsass holds in his portrait. This piece has also been produced as a limited edition with a total of only 50 units.Share on Facebook
A giant in the world of design, BD Barcelona combines Spanish flair with an artistic sensibility.
Barcelona is one of our favourite places to hang out. Why? Lots of reasons; for a start it was founded as a Roman city in the Middle Ages and merged with the Kingdom of Aragon, which we think sounds kind of like something from Game of Thrones.
We also love the fact that the city is home to so many of Gaudi’s bizarre ‘melting’ buildings. His greatest of all is the Sagrada Familia, which has been under construction since 1882. Obviously Gaudi wasn’t a bloke who liked to hurry things along. As a child he once took three weeks to make a Plasticine snake.
In 1929 Barcelona became the home to Mies Van der Rohe’s German Pavilion for the International Exposition. The pavilion featured one of the most iconic – not to mention hellishly uncomfortable – chairs in the history of furniture: The Barcelona Chair (we suspect Mies was moonlighting as a chiropractor).
Barcelona was finally recognised for its amazing built environment in 1999, winning the RIBA Gold Medal. This is the first and only time the award has gone to a city and not an individual architect.
But what we love most of all about Barcelona is the little company started there in 1972 by five quirky architects: Pep Bonet, Lluis Cloteet, Cristian Cirici, Mireia Riera and Oscar Tusquets. Their design philosophy was summed up by the juxtaposition of the Catalan traits of rauxa (unconventionality) with seny (common sense).
BD Barcelona’s first shop attracted media attention through its wacky window displays and products that were unlike anything the world had ever seen. Accompanied with artisanal processes instead of mass production, the new products (often in limited editions) were closer to art than industrial design.
This appreciation of art was further emphasised when the company edited Gaudi’s furniture for his buildings in the early 80s, and a decade later introduced a series of furniture and lamps designed by Dali. More recently BD has collaborated with the likes of Ross Lovegrove, Jaime Hayon and Doshi Levien.
“BD = ART = BD,” says KE-ZU’s Caron Grunschlag. “The company has represented the great Spanish artists of the 20th and 21st centuries. “You need to look at the objects from BD as functional sculptures. They are investments, and just as you would invest in a painting of Salvador Dali, so you would invest in one of his pieces of furniture.”
Next time you pop into the KE-ZU showroom, check out BD’s new Shanty Credenza by Doshi Levien. It’s a patchwork of corrugated surfaces that references improvised dwellings from Cape Town to Alice Springs. One look at it and you’ll see why we think BD is one of the world’s most exciting manufacturers.
“It is company owned and run by architects; they are truly the forward thinkers and trend setters for the market,” Caron says. “You know that if BD starts to work with someone new, that person is about to become the next big thing.”
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We were intending to launch our new KE-ZU blog series Furniture for Thought at Blogsphere 2014 – the World Blogging Festival in Cannes this year. To our disappointment when we turned up at the venue, we were shocked to find it was a small shop on the boardwalk, selling You Cannes Touch This T-shirts to desperate Japanese tourists. The owner of the shop, Pierre La Bloom, ensured us that he’d never heard of Blogosphere 2014, but it would be a great idea for a T-shirt.
A few enquiries to the local tourism authority confirmed our worst fears. Blogosphere 2014 Cannes does not exist. Not in any way shape or form. We had been scammed out of our $5,000 entry fee by a shonky Nigerian named Mr Adebayo who (perhaps not surprisingly) refused to return our frantic calls.
So, jetlagged, $5,000-out-of-pocket, and back in sunny Sydney with nothing to show for our disastrous trip but a You Cannes Touch This T-shirt (Caron’s idea not mine) we are left with little choice but to launch Furniture for Thought right here, right now in less salubrious circumstances. No red carpets, no rude French waiters, no cocktails tricked up with miniature umbrellas… just a laptop on a desk at KE-ZU headquarters, a cold espresso and a half-eaten mulberry macaroon.
So, without further ado, welcome to Furniture for Thought; our new weekly look at the brands that help to make KE-ZU the uber-cool destination it is. In each edition we’ll be exploring one manufacturer, seeking to find out what it is that makes them tick. We’ll look at the history, the people, and the philosophy behind the names.
Furniture for Thought will be your go-to destination for information about some of the biggest, most dynamic furniture and lighting brands on the planet. Brands such as BD Barcelona, LZF, Andreu World, Expormim, Parachilna, Forestier, Vondom and Sancal.
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If you didn’t have a chance to see our installation at the Tongue N Groove showroom during Melbourne InDesign you will find some of the bd Barcelona pieces on display at the Living Edge showroom in Melbourne, but for the full collection you will have to come and visit KE-ZU in Sydney.
Introducing a New Lighting Collection by Parachilna
This brand is forging a philosophy built around honesty in design, an appreciation of the value of precious materials, and a respect for handcrafted manufacturing methods.
Designers Jaime Hayon and Stephen Burks presented the first collection of Parachilna at the last edition of the Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan. Not surprisingly, it was a resounding success.
For more information please contact us: email@example.com or 1300 724 174
“A chair can even be used for sitting on, but with just one condition: that we be uncomfortably seated” Salvador Dali
During the 1930’s in Paris, Jean-Michel Frank, a furniture maker and decorator of great repute, was on very good terms with Dali and together they worked on several ideas. In the 1990’s a group of experts led by Oscar Tusquets set themselves the task of of turning the furniture that Dali had drawn for Jean-Michel Franke into a reality.
More art than furniture this iconic design is now offered in a limited release ‘black’ model to mark the 20th Anniversary of the “Maestro’s” death.Share on Facebook