Dezeen Magazine

Maker's Collection by Lawson Fenning
Lawson Fenning's Maker's Collection includes a pink daybed with velvet upholstery and leathery arms

California modernists RM Schindler and Richard Neutra influence Maker's Collection furniture

Los Angeles studio Lawson-Fenning has outfitted an apartment in RM Schindler's 1930s residential building Manola Court with furniture influenced by California modernism.

Lawson-Fenning, which was founded by Glenn Lawson and Grant Fenning, designed the furnishings to geometric forms and a mix of materials similar to those used by the modernist California designers such as Schindler and Richard Neutra.

Maker's Collection by Lawson Fenning
Among the series is The Maker's Console wooden shelving unit

The furnishings are a mixture of the studio's recent Maker's Collection – comprising a lounge chair, bookcase, console, book rack, pinboard, armchair and daybed – alongside older collections.

The studio chose to mark the launch of Maker's Collection with a photoshoot in RM Schindler's Manola Court, a grouping of apartment buildings that the Austrian-born American architect completed in the 1930s.

Local firm Enclosures Architects renovated the 16-unit complex last year, preserving many of Schindler's original modernist details.

Maker's Collection by Lawson Fenning
Two leather slingback chairs are detailed with brass buckles and buttons

"By featuring the collection within the same walls that inspired the design, we aimed to bring life to the pieces," said Lawson-Fenning founders Grant Fenning and Glenn Lawson.

Lawson-Fenning designed the Maker's Collection to expose their structure and construction, which was a key detail in mid-century design.

Maker's Collection by Lawson Fenning
The furniture was displayed alongside objects, such as this circular, ribbed coffee table, from Lawson-Fenning's Winter 2019 Ojai Collection

"The Maker's Collection honors that vision with exposed hardware, structural steel frames, and materials in their purest form," they said. "Geometry and intersecting planes are central to the vernacular of the design."

For the daybed, the team upholstered a rectangular cushion with pink velvet. The seat features powder-coated steel arms that are wrapped in leather.

A leather slingback detailed with brass buckles and buttons attaches to the oiled wood frame of both the Maker's Lounge Chair and Maker's Armchair. Both seats can be customised with either an oiled walnut or oiled oak frame and a number of fabrics.

To form the arms of the Armchair, Lawson-Fenning placed upholstered pads on top of curved black metal rods.

Maker's Collection by Lawson Fenning
A mirror from the Ojai Collection, also influenced by modernist designs, was staged with the new pieces

Both the Maker's Console and Maker's Bookcase are constructed with American oak or walnut and feature several shelves. The backs are detailed with a sheet of blackened steel perforated with tiny holes. The unit rest bases also made from the black metal material.

Other pieces in the new series are two pinboards available in natural or black cork and a bookshelf with three container-like shelves made from wood that attach to a metal back.

Maker's Collection by Lawson Fenning
Lawson-Fenning photographed the furniture in Manola Court, an apartment complex designed by RM Schindler in the 1930s

The furniture was displayed alongside a round coffee table, floor mirror, and other objects from Lawson-Fenning's Winter 2019 Ojai Collection, which was also influenced by Schindler's work and the topography and lifestyle of the California coast.

A number of other designers have created new pieces influenced by the aesthetic of famous architects and artists, Italian architecture studio Marcante Testa created a bathroom appliance collection that takes cues from work by American pop artist Roy Lichtenstein and Danish brand Mater launched chairs reminiscent of furniture designed by Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius and faculty members Marcel Breuer and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.

Photography is Yoshi Makino.