Mathieu Lehanneur wraps Hybrid radio
for Lexon in woven rattan


Maison&Objet 2014: French designer Mathieu Lehanneur has wrapped a pattern of woven rattan around one side of this radio for design brand Lexon, which is on show at the Maison&Objet trade fair that begins today in Paris.

Hybrid radio wrapped in woven rattan by Mathieu Lehanneur for Lexon

Lehanneur used the natural material on his Hybrid radio for Lexon as a contrast to the digital technology. "Digital intelligence is blended here with a raw material, what might be called smart and craft," said Lehanneur.

Hybrid radio wrapped in woven rattan by Mathieu Lehanneur for Lexon

Formed from dried palm-like grasses and woven into a flexible material, the rattan is wrapped around one of the curved ends of the radio and framed by plastic on all sides.

Hybrid radio wrapped in woven rattan by Mathieu Lehanneur for Lexon

Disks sticking out of the other end control the volume and radio frequency, which is shown using a small digital display on the front. The chunky antenna that pops from the top can be adjusted up and down to receive the best signal.

Small and large sizes are available, and both come with either a white or graphite-coloured case. The radio is being presented at Maison&Objet fair at the Nord Villepinte exhibition centre outside Paris, which commences today and runs until 28 January.

  • Romain_M

    Is the rattan really necessary?

    • Eru

      Is a new radio design really necessary?

      • Trunkyfab

        Is new design necessary?

  • olga

    Probably not really regarding the function, but to me it looks nice. So at the end, yes, necessary.

    • Romain_M

      I’m more impressed with the way the antenna is integrated into the over-all design and how it probably deploys when you push it in gently.

      This suggests an “easy-to-carry” narrative behind the object (an idea important to Lexon, considering their other products).

      In light of all this, the rattan comes off as an added technical difficulty. I get that the geometry of the weave is appealing, but Yves Behar’s work for Jawbone shows that you can achieve the same level of aesthetics through simpler and more durable materials.

  • Trunkyfab

    It makes me want to pick it up, it adds a warmth that is missing with a lot of devices. For me, beauty is necessary. And some good tunes…

  • Romain_M

    Ha! That’s a fun line of questioning

    I’d answer that a designer isn’t just a stylist and this particular radio looks like a hodge-podge of materials. The latter are even assembled very much like they would be on a run-way or other fashion event.

    This doesn’t mean that radios shouldn’t be redesigned: Teague published their research on the question a few years ago, and their radioball is a good example of design thinking. I could also add that Apple has been consistently “reinventing the wheel” to great effect.

  • pozzo

    It makes me want to pick it up and put it in the bin : ) We’ll always need pretty objects, but that’s subjective, I find the rattan not only unnecessary but also it doesn’t go together with the plastic casing, even the size of the weaving I think is too big.

    This is skeumorphic for the sake of being different. Just my opinion.

  • ewa

    I strangely dislike these.

  • emans

    If this product was a person, it would be the sleazy car salesman. I like honest products.

  • snolas

    There is a radio in my mobile phone! What is this? An attempt to package nicely and sell empty space?

  • arriven

    Is this designed for the land of teeny tiny, sh**** LCDs from 15 years ago? A dial and needle tuner would have looked far more appropriate and less Brookstone. These are weird in a bad way.