Dezeen Magazine

Nendo designs collection of movement-tracing furniture

New York 2016: prolific Japanese studio Nendo has unveiled a collection of furniture and lighting featuring sketch-like outlines that trace the motion of moving elements (+ slideshow).

Trace-collection by Nendo

The Trace collection includes a range of cupboards, a long glass-topped reception counter and a series of black metal lighting pendants.

Trace-collection by Nendo

The movements of each piece – such as the opening of cupboard doors or the swinging of a hanging light bulb – are highlighted with black metal outlines.

Video demonstrating the movements of the Trace cupboard

The studio said that the outlines reflected the movements that and to be taken into account by designers when laying out spaces.

"Within the space where we live there are items that move," said the studio. "They are furniture, doors and windows – items that move in relation to our daily activities."

Trace-collection by Nendo

"Although they may not be visible, we are subconsciously aware of the traces of their movements every day," it said. "For example, because of that, we do not put a vase in front of a door."

"It is essential for a person who specialises in space design to be even more aware of this, as they have to portray these traces onto drawings."

Trace-collection by Nendo

Each of the 12 cupboards in the collection feature doors that open in different configurations, while 10 lighting pendants are each positioned at different angles.

The long glass-topped reception counter is supported by a series of wooden legs, which feature the trace of a door opening in a frame-by-frame sequence.

Trace-collection by Nendo

A number of designers have created objects that look like line drawings recently. Last year, Nendo created a range of furniture that looked like it had been drawn onto the surfaces at a gallery in Tokyo.

During Milan design week 2016, Dutch designers Kiki van Eijk and Joost van Bleiswijk unveiled a range that looks like two-dimensional sketches, but in inverted colours so black lines are replaced with chalk-like marks. Other examples include a pair of chairs that look like unfinished sketches by Kazakh designer Nissa Kinzhalina and an outline of a traditional house created by artist Sarah FitzSimons for the first Chicago Architecture Biennal.

Trace-collection by Nendo

Led by designer Oki Sato, Nendo has developed numerous unconventional furniture pieces, including a sketch-like table that follows the contours of a gallery, a series of chairs influenced by comic books and a collection shaped like Winnie-the-Pooh characters.

In an interview with Dezeen last year, Sato said that working on up to 400 projects at a time relaxes him. His prolific output was the subject of the studio's first major museum retrospective at Israel's Design Museum Holon earlier in the year.

Trace-collection by Nendo

"I can't keep up," he said. "The more ideas I think of, the more ideas I come up with. It is like breathing or eating."

Nendo will present the Trace collection at the Collective Design Fair in New York, taking place from 4 to 8 May.