Dutch designers Tejo Remy & René Veenhuizen have designed a collection of furniture that looks inflated but is actually made of cast concrete.
The series includes prototypes of two chairs, a bench and table that have been cast inside plastic sheeting and reinforced with steel rods and metal fibres.
The prototypes will be on show as part of an exhibition of the designers' work at the Industry Gallery in Washington DC later this week.
Called Hands On, the exhibition opens on 20 March and runs until 8 May.
The following details are from the Gallery:
INDUSTRY GALLERY PREMIERS NEW CONCRETE FURNITURE PROTOTYPES BY DESIGNERS TEJO REMY & RENÉ VEENHUIZEN IN
“HANDS ON” – REMY & VEENHUIZEN’S FIRST SOLO U.S. EXHIBITION
Internationally Acclaimed Designers Remy & Veenhuizen Mark Ten Year Partnership
Industry Gallery will premier four prototypes from a news series of concrete furniture by Dutch designer Tejo Remy, a founding designer at Droog, and René Veenhuizen, his design partner of the past decade, at the opening of “Hands On” March 20, 2010, 6-8PM. This is the first solo U.S. exhibition for Atelier Remy & Veenhuizen and it will run through May 8. The exhibition focuses on the work, largely unknown in the U.S., produced by the designers during the past decade and will feature a dozen items created from concrete, bamboo, tennis balls, Accoya® and old woolen blankets.
The exhibition will introduce four prototypes – two chairs, a bench and a stool – for a series of furniture that appears to be made of inflated fabric, but actually is made from poured concrete. Remy & Veenhuizen cast each prototype as a single piece in individual molds created from waterproof PVC or plastic sheeting. Once assembled, the molds are placed upside down and concrete is poured into the feet. The legs are steel reinforced and the concrete itself contains small metal fibers that add stability. Within two days the works are solid enough for the mold to be cut off; and, within two weeks, the furniture is completely dry.
The concrete furniture prototypes stem from designers’ aesthetic that advocates using mundane material. The new works follow a lineage established in 1991 when Tejo Remy created “Rag Chair,” “Chest of Drawers (You Can’t Lay Down Your Memories)” and “Milk Bottle Lamp”, which reused and repurposed basic, discarded and underappreciated materials. Those three works, staples at Droog since 1993, are included in major public and private international collections.
"We wanted to create landscape elements that were tactile and soft, even though they were made from concrete. The original idea was to work with big rubber molds to create a soft appearance," said Veenhuizen. Remy added, "We reduced the size of the works to make them more manageable. Then, as we experimented with the concrete, we became interested in the amount of pressure the concrete put on the molds, and how the end result made that pressure permanently visible."
“These new prototypes reflect the ingenuity, curiosity and inventive use of materials that are hallmarks of Tejo and René’s design ethos,” said Industry Gallery owner Craig Appelbaum.