Collective concepts: the W* picks from Collective Design Fair 2016
On what is a busy week in New York’s design and art calendars, Collective Design launched its much-anticipated annual fair at the Skylight Clarkson Square, just west of Soho. Now in its fourth year, the fair features 31 international galleries that focus on collectible design, including Johnson Trading Gallery, Gallery ALL, 99¢ Plus Gallery, Friedman Benda, and R & Company. The roster of represented designers includes historical luminaries – Isamu Noguchi for Johnson Trading Gallery, Harry Bertoia for Lost City Arts and Mark McDonald – as well as a long list of contemporary designers, including Christian Wassmann for Frederieke Taylor, and the Campana Brothers for Friedman Benda.
This year, the fair launched what it calls ‘Collective Concept’, a series of booths that allowed invited designers to exhibit their work without gallery representation, further extending the fair’s reach. For the inaugural cohort, the fair turned to Lindsey Adelman, Apparatus Studio, Fort Standard, Calico Wallpaper and Cocobolo Design.
The results are diverse. Adelman presented a video, Some Relationships Are Better Than Others, that shows two of her ‘Burst’ chandeliers crashing into each other to become a cloud of tiny particles. She did this alongside a new chandelier made with Nymphenburg porcelain discs. Apparatus Studio presented its first foray into fixtures using LED light, and Fort Standard launched a new furniture collection, ‘Qualities of Material’, that explores the possibilities of wood, stone and leather.
Interspersed throughout the fair are five booths designated as ‘Collective Features’ that present work from Sight Unseen, BDDW/M.Crow, A/D/O and CW&T, Print All Over Me and Various Projects, and Nicole Nadeau. For BDDW/M.Crow, Tyler Hays launched a new body of work that moves down in scale. For this, he developed a series of knives, puzzles and clothing, taking aesthetic cues from the American West.
The fair also provides an opportunity to commission new work. Brooklyn design firm The Principals conceived an outdoor installation, Glacial Drift, at the venue’s entrance. The modular construction provides outdoor seating and space for plantings, all while filtering light, providing an ambient presence on an otherwise industrial city block.