WWIII by Atelier Van Lieshout
for Lensvelt

| 6 comments

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Atelier Van Lieshout arranged its new furniture pieces for Dutch company Lensvelt around an enormous blue cannon at Ventura Lambrate last month.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Called WWIII, the cannon is based on an American design and follows two previous cannon sculptures based on Czech and Soviet models.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

The new furniture pieces are the AVL Cloud Bar Table with bulging bubbles on the underside, the cantilevered AVL Koker Chair and the more traditional wooden AVL Spider chair.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Atelier Van Lieshout and Lensvelt have previously collaborated on a sofa system with sliding backrests - see our earlier story.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Joep Van Lieshout is best known for his disturbing sculptures and you can see all our stories about his work here.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

The Ventura Lambrate design district took place from 17 to 22 April. See all our stories about Ventura Lambrate 2012 here.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

Photography is by Ilco Kemmere, apart from where otherwise stated.

Here's some more information from the catalogue, entitled Furnicaton:


“The WWIII cannon is the third

in a series. This series is about design. The first was a Czech cannon. Made of iron, with round, feminine forms.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

The second was a Soviet cannon. Enormous amounts of those things were made, tens of thousands. Ugly and cheap.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

The third one, in Milan, is based on an American cannon and is constructed following modernist principles. A cannon is a monument to heroism and sacrifice.”

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

“We live in a world where ugly things that people would really rather not see, like war, are polished and glorified. Heroism and sacrifice are presented as something beautiful. In computer games, and in the media. While that’s a lie. There’s nothing beautiful about dying as a piece of cannon fodder. This world has become one big Walt Disney film. A perfect world. While exploitation of people is growing ever more efficient. This cannon is a protest against that.”

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

The AVL Cloud Bar is everything an traditional table isn’t. Designed as a bar table, it serves as a meeting point,
a place for socializing, inter- action, spontaneity. It does not look like a traditional table either. It is neither square, flat or four-legged. Instead, it looks like an assembly of clouds, or balls, or air, connecting ideas and people. It symbolizes the freedom, creativity and volatility of clouds, the liberation of the office worker.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

The AVL Koker Chair looks timeless, almost primitive, and seeks to contrast with the static look that ‘design classics’ have. The chairs’ design was dictated by limitations. Joep set himself the task of creating a stackable chair with only the materials he had available in the workshop; this resulted in the use of square metal tubes – which in Dutch are called ‘koker’. At the same time, the name refers to the Dutch word for a pencil skirt (kokerrok), which exudes elegance and sexiness.

WW III by Atelier Van Lieshout for Lensvelt

Above: photograph is by Frans Strous

The AVL Spider Chair is first and foremost a functional chair, which was made using traditional carpenters methods. Its’ wooden, light-weight, thin legged frame makes it resemble a spider, a weaving animal, connected to crafts. It forcefully denies the dry, technical, emotionless methods used in modern day design.

  • james orf

    that furniture looks as interesting and comfortable as a canon ball up the backside
    fire away…

  • James Longfield

    How is it appropriate to evoke memories of a World War in order to sell furniture?

    • H-J

      Because that's how people are, they kill and do terrible things to one another (and animals for that matter) AVL just makes it visible. Is it appropriate to promote killing humans in order to have low gasoline prices or to sell computer games or movietickets?

  • xtiaan

    I think I liked them better when they were doing vagina shaped bars and stuff…

  • Roger Roger

    I’m sure ercol will be very interested to see that third chair!!!!

  • Jeroen

    So, why didn’t Joep van Lieshout actually design a chair that – in the way it is produced – enhances the human and natural environment, instead of creating another way of wasting more resources? A desire for resources is exactly the starting point of every war. If you have a problem with war, do something useful with that thought.

    The act of using scrap material for the design of something that is reproduced is symbolic. The critique on war is symbolic.

    Joep, you have the ability to reach many and make projects of a reasonably large magnitude. Please, don’t be so lazy. And don’t make crappy Maarten van severen copies either.