Milan 2013: London designer Philippe Malouin is exhibiting furniture built from slats of two-by-four, sand-cast chairs and a spinning candle at the ProjectB gallery in Milan.
Simple, a show of Malouin's recent work, includes the Slat table, made of two-by-four timber lengths laid horizontally to create a top and arranged radially on end to create two cylindrical legs.
The table is accompanied by shorter benches in the same style, which can be stacked up into a bookshelf.
Horizontal bands circle the lamp, bookends and containers in the series of Functional Shapes, formed from lathed and polished layers of black MDF.
Each Type Cast Chair is sand cast in aluminium or iron to create a single piece covered in marks left by the process.
Three slender legs support a thin seat that's curved at the back and an equally svelte back support that follows the same shape.
The Pendulum installation comprises a candle lit at both ends, which is suspended on wires stretching between two walls.
As melting wax from one end drips to the floor, the weight distribution changes and the candle spins upside down, then the process repeats.
Also on display are wall hangings covered in geometric patterns produced by slicing through layers of MDF.
ProjectB gallery is located at Via Maroncelli 7 in Milan and the exhibition continues until 10 May.
Read on for more information from the gallery:
ProjectB is proud to present the first solo exhibition in Italy by Canadian designer Philippe Malouin in the occasion of Milan’s furniture fair in April 2013. Malouin has emerged as one of the strongest voices of today’s design with his simple and yet sophisticated products that always develop from an endless research on materials, forms and techniques.
The power of Malouin’s objects and furniture relays on their permanence and durability: from a rug made of metal, to an all-in-one meeting room with hanging chairs; from a racking system in metal that includes the lighting, to a series of lamps inspired by classical shutters. The designer often begins his design process from an existing reality to develop new unprecedented projects.
For his solo show at ProjectB SIMPLE, Malouin is presenting two new series of objects - commissioned by Emanuele Bonomi’s gallery, Slat and Type Cast Chairs - and an installation titled Pendulum that coherently represents his wide spirit of action. Pendulum is a reflection on gravity and by contrast a speculation on ephemera.
Malouin’s research is based on the power of materials: for Functional Shapes, black MDF sheeting is cut and laminated and the resulting material is then turned into shape on a lathe. MDF is extensively hand-polished, transforming this extremely rudimentary material into something new, light and highly tactile. The simple geometric shapes are dictated by their function revealing a lamp, bookends and nestling boxes, presented for the first time in a pitch black finishing.
The same color is to be found in the Type Cast Chairs, a series of sand casted sitting tools in iron or aluminum as a single component. The chair is extremely thin with no mechanical fixings and surprisingly resistant. The sand leaves its mark on each chair, transmitting something of its own history and making each one of them slightly different than the other.
In Philippe Malouin’s Slats pieces, standard timber slats are translated and repeated, forming a linear pattern, revealing a tabletop, rotated around an axis, forming a base and reflected for support. The resulting table gives the impression of a building, columns and ceiling. The same simple process is applied to benches that can stacked to become a bookshelf.
Malouin’s objects and installations are new simple classics. As he expresses in his own words: “Simple timber slats, positioned in the right rhythm and proportions create benches, a table, a library. A Simple chair, exhibiting modest geometry and simple boxes, bookends and a lamp composed of a readily available and humble material such as MDF, just cut and polished. A simple natural phenomenon, powering an installation. SIMPLE is an exercise in restraint. The statement is the absence of complication, nothing is hidden, nothing is faked, everything is displayed. A complicated needs to lead to a visually and tactually simple outcome. A traditional process leads to a well-balanced object. An unexpected discovery creates a deceptively simple installation. A traditional process is used to facilitate simplicity of shape and thickness” (Philippe Malouin, 2012).