Although designers now have many innovative materials available, wood still attracts and inspires them. Why? You can find answers to this question on the excellent exhibition ‘Unexpected Artwork’ organized by the KOOK Gallery .
If someone a few weeks ago told us that in Bialystok we will see one of the best design collections we saw this year, we would not believe.
Over the years, we have become accustomed to seeing good projects in Lodz, Gdynia, Poznan, Warsaw and even in Cieszyn, so Białystok did not quite associate us with this industry.
It turns out, however, that it is in this city that the seat of KOOK is located . This is an internet platform offering unique furniture and interior fittings that have so far been inaccessible or difficult to reach not only in Poland, but also in many foreign markets. In the catalog of the company you can find carefully selected proposals of more than 50 brands and designers from the world’s leading (many of them KOOKU is exclusive in this part of Europe). Among them are such celebrities as Nendo , Piet Hein Eek , Jamie Hayon and Nika Zupanc or very capable but less known creators like Cameron Mathieson and Alcarol .
It is the author’s selection that is the biggest distinguishing feature of the KOOK – sometimes it is difficult to make clear whether the objects offered by the company are still objects or works of artists.
Characteristic and extremely consistent selection makes the Polish platform has customers around the world and is appreciated at prestigious trade fairs – among others. Milan Design Week in Italy and Kortrijk in Belgium.
KOOKU works globally, but its founders, Konrad Kudraszow and Dorota Zaniewska, still live in Bialystok and are local patriots, so it was in this town that they opened their first shoowroom.
At present, you can see an exhibition ‘Unhurried Masterpiece’, where the best works of wood-making designers offered by KOOK are gathered. Why such a topic?
” According to the biologists, the tree in the evolutionary process has been set to be ‘slow’, that is slow growth and stretched for decades and even centuries of maturation and adaptation to the environment.
The tree is in no hurry because any hurry will adversely affect its structure and weaken its resistance. The slower it grows, the more stable and healthier it will be.
It is the perfect material for designers, craftsmen or artists who want to create lasting, timeless furniture, furnishings or artwork. These characteristics make wood fascinate so many KOOK creators. – Konrad Kudraszow and Dorota Zaniewska explain.
The works that you can see at the exhibition show very well the distinctive selection of KOOK creators who put on a unique, somewhat artistic design in opposition to mass produced furnishings.
Designers taking part in the exhibition use wood in very different ways. Some bravely experiment with it and in the process of burning, bend, compress or even flood the resin with this natural material.
Others try to maximize the resources available using recycled wood. For yet others traditional craftsmanship is counted, allowing to create timeless wood objects that remain in the family for several generations. Despite these differences, all the items chosen by the founders of KOOK fit together, and the exhibition ‘Uneasy masterpiece’ creates a coherent whole.
Below we write about 5 designers who impressed us the most. However, if you have the opportunity, you must see the exhibition yourself. Hurry, because it is open only until Friday, June 30.
1. Piet Hein Eek
The Dutch Piet Hein Eek measures wood in all its forms – primarily recycled: from old buildings, floors, joinery or furniture.
Many of the unusually laborious wooden designs of Pieta Heina Eeka look like carefully arranged mosaics, puzzles, like patchwork patchwork hours.
Although they come with recovery, they exude elegance and respect for the material – there is something about Protestant modesty and the economy that does not allow you to waste a scrap of wood. It is famous for transforming even the smallest wastes from his workshop – he is fascinated by transformation and giving new life to him is a challenge.
2. Christophe Delcourt
Christophe Delcourt combines raw, natural materials and elegant forms. His ambition is to create furniture that is a long-term investment, a companion for life.
Just as former French craftsmen believe that everything starts with material, manual work and experience. In every facility that comes out of his workshop feel the attention to detail, rigor of work and undeniable sensuality. Wood is one of his favorite materials, and Nature is an inexhaustible source of inspiration for him. – If we look around, we will notice that there are so many shapes, colors and structures in Nature that can be used to design furniture. I believe that is what I see. Delcourt.
Keep natural materials in the same shape as the one in which we meet them in our environment and transform them into unique design objects – this is Alcarol’s goal.
The brand was created by two Italians: Andrea Forti and Eleonora Dal Farra. Wood is often the object of their interest – the pale venomous lagoons destroyed by sea water, hubs and lichen covered with tree trunks from forests on the slopes of the Dolomites, bark of oak and oak trees. By fixing them in a transparent resin, they stop the fleeting moments of their existence, moments of passing, telling about their nature and the processes taking place in the environment.
4. Johannes Hemann
Johannes Hemann gives wood to various processes, inspired by elements – burns, flexes and compresses under extreme pressure.
It uses the visual and formal contrast between natural and processed wood, processed. It is fascinated by the variety of forms given to trees by nature, but it can also joke with our wooden habits, replacing wood with flexible foam in the Stolen Wood collection.
5. John Eric Byers
John Eric Byers is recognized as one of the most outstanding contemporary American woodworking designers. Working hand-made creates minimalist, yet very organic furniture.
The student of the outstanding sculptor and creator of the Wendell Castle furniture combines simple, monumental forms with extremely haptic structures obtained by scrupulous carving.
His work will be found at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington and the Mint Museum in Charlottesville.
All projects you can see until 30 June at the exhibition ‘Unholy masterpiece’ in KOOK showroom at ul. Warsaw 14 in Bialystok.
Of course, you can also view and order through the KOOK platform .