Loved meeting Patrik Fredrikson and Ian Stallard, the duo leading exponents of British 21st-century design at a dinner party held by their dealer David Gill in New York. I was first introduced to the work of Fredrikson Stallard at the Victoria and Albert Museum, where two of their pieces were on display as a part of the contemporary design acquisition program, illuminating their unique approach to materials and the sensuality of their objects. It was their extraordinary ‘Log Table,’ meticulously crafted of quartered sections of birch tree trunks, then strapped together with steel strap to form a low circle (above); and their ‘Pyrenees Sofa,’ hand carved of a block of polyurethane foam in a shape of a forest green mountain landscape (below). Since joining David Gill Gallery in 2006, the two have reached the freedom to experiment with unusual materials and processes, while their work has been exhibited worldwide. The new collection which was introduced at Collective Design Fair last week consists of pieces that demonstrate the materiality of their approach, and which extension of their previous pieces, manifest fresh look, innovative approach, and a great emphasis on beauty. The crystalline is dominant as a form and as the leading element in many of the pieces, manifesting expressionist agenda. A bronze cabinet cast from pieces of cardboard, opened to a gilt, luxurious interior; burgundy sofa carved of foam to look like an enormous rock; dining table crafted of clear acrylic in the shape of an iceberg; and a table lamp carved of an alabaster. The two are so stylish and playful, I found, that their sensual, chic pieces are the direct extension of who they are.
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