It's no secret that we're a bit in awe of Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec here at Wallpaper* HQ.
The totemic design duo – and co-recipients of this year's Wallpaper* Design Awards 'Designer of the Year' accolade – have long been trend-setters and ground-breakers, with a multifaceted practice spanning furniture and architecture through urban planning and jewellery (and more).
Thus, a new retrospective on the brothers' work is always call for some small celebration. Until August, the denizens of Brittany will be privy to a host of Bouroullec projects in the form of 'Exhibition in Rennes: Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec', their first exhibition in the region. Held across Les Champs Libres, the Frac Bretange contemporary art museum and Le parlement de Bretagne, the show is conceived as two parts.
The first comprises a 20-year retrospective of industrial projects between the eponymous studios and heavyweight design-world manufacturers such as Alessi, Magis, Kvadrat, Vitra, Artek and Samsung (the recent 'Serif' TV collaboration also won the Wallpaper* award for 'Best Domestic Design'). The display of furniture and domestic wares is complemented by an array of procedural ephemera drawn from the studio's archive, from development notebooks to scale models.
'Urban Reveries' – installed at Les Champs Libres – comprises the duo's first municipal landscape design. A wealth of dioramic architectural models evoke beguiling new public places, sparsely set with rocky outcrops, elevated sculptural streams and gardens, and other reinvented 'urban patterns' – 'a wandering or urban dreaming based on a reflection of the city layout', the studio explains.
2015's 'Le Kiosque' is located in the parliament courtyard. The Prouvé-channelling box – created in powder-coated steel, with an oak interior and overhanging roof – first appeared in Paris' Tuileries last October, a movable modular wonder originally conceived as a tool to integrate art in public places. Even without the surprise of the new, it still intrigues. (Here, the kisok is paired with 'Palissade', an offering of outdoor furniture designed in collaboration with Hay.)
Finally, '17 Screens' is an abstract display of hanging screens and a foray into the melding of 3D printing with more conventional production methods. Previously on show at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, the futuristic constructions of glass, ceramic, wood and aluminium rods – as well as curtains of cup-like mouldings created by ceramics innovators Mutina and sheets of patterned textile – are as abstract a concept as we've seen from the Bouroullecs. (It's a little less Tron than the Tel Aviv layout, but this is still very much set within the liminal space between design and art – a masterful exercise in creating 'experimental and atmospheric modules’.)
Collectively, the show is a keenly-curated mixture of old and new – simultaneously affording a reassessment of design classics while hinting at more outré directions to come. As always, we're piqued.
For more information, visit the Bouroullec’s website
Receive our daily digest of inspiration, escapism and design stories from around the world direct to your inbox
‘Tropical Modernism: Architecture and Independence’ at the V&A is a bold exploration
London’s V&A presents ‘Tropical Modernism: Architecture and Independence’, a deep dive into 1940s architectural influences within West Africa and India
By Amah-Rose Abrams Published
Rooms Batumi in Georgia oozes retro flair
Rooms Batumi offers round beds and velvet sofas, exquisite dining and an upcoming rooftop pool on the Black Sea coast
By Nicola Leigh Stewart Published
Smart toilet by Samuel Ross for Kohler flushes out the inefficiencies of conventional designs
The Formation 02 smart toilet by Samuel Ross for Kohler is the second step in the multi-year collaboration between the British designer and the bathroom brand
By Adrian Madlener Published
Tajimi Custom Tiles makes Milan Design Week debut with Bouroullec vases
At Milan Design Week 2022, Tajimi Custom Tiles presents new designs by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec and pieces by Max Lamb and Kwangho Lee
By Danielle Demetriou Last updated
Prostoria celebrates its modernist roots and a decade of design
‘Prostoria 10’ is a project marking the Croatian furniture brand’s ten years and its connection with Zagreb’s rich modernist architectural legacy
By Simon Mills Last updated
The world’s oldest opera gains a space-age stage intervention
Kinetic sculpture 'Ego' – designed by Lonneke Gordijn of Studio Drift – moves with the performance in a minimal and modern manifestation of the world’s oldest-known opera, L’Orfeo
By Yoko Choy Last updated
Feminism, fantasy and furniture at Stockholm Design Week 2020
We traversed the Swedish capital to unlock the unmissable events at Stockholm Design Week 2020 (3-9 February) that included responsible design at Stockholm Furniture Fair, pop-ups in restaurants and ex-military bases, plus a recreated artist’s atelier
By Sujata Burman Last updated
Lego enlists Camille Walala for interactive shipping container in London
In celebration of Lego’s new 2D play concept, the Lego Dot, Camille Walala creates an interactive shipping-container installation in King’s Cross, using over two million lego bricks
By Katie Meston Last updated
In Miami, Perrier-Jouët presents a cave of ceramics
11,000 ceramics in four different shades and 15 different hues make up Metamorphosis, an installation by Andrea Mancuso for Maison Perrier-Jouët at Design Miami
By Sujata Burman Last updated
Henri Matisse’s legacy lives on with new brand launching at FIAC
Jaime Hayon, the late Alessandro Mendini and Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec create vases under the Maison Matisse brand, founded by the artist’s great-grandchildren
By Clara Le Fort Last updated
Decoding the creative process at Mini’s A/D/O space in New York
Universal Design Studio realises an ever-evolving installation titled ‘On Loop’ inside the Brooklyn spot
By Pei-Ru Keh Last updated