Fair game: Wallpaper* rounds up the hits from NYCxDesign 2016

Bower's booth at Sight Unseen Offsite
This year's edition of NYCxDesign was more vibrant than ever, with strong showcases by Sight Unseen Offsite, ICFF and Wanted Design. Pictured: Bower's booth at Sight Unseen Offsite.
(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

NYCxDesign, which yesterday came to a close after a 14-day run, is swiftly becoming as much of an all-encompassing design week as its competitors in Milan, Paris and Stockholm, et al. Not just marked by a slew of gallery and boutique openings, the event also encompasses a series of headlining fairs, many of which expressed an uplifting maturity this year. Stronger across the board than in years past, these fairs include the futurist Sight Unseen Offsite, the internationalist Wanted Design, the megalith International Contemporary Furniture Fair, and of course, the Collective Design Fair (opens in new tab), which helped kick things off on the right foot.

Within the aisles of these showcases were treasures to be discovered. These not only pointed to the healthy state of the design world, but also showed that innovation and aesthetics are being considered in equal measure. Practitioners, from the independent to incorporated, continued to follow strong lines – a fascination with geometry, from art deco to Memphis-inspired, prevailed; while a contemporary reimagining of historical styles or manufacturers, too, saw an exciting new dialogue sparked, as with the 'Furnishing Utopia' Shaker reinterpretation at Sight Unseen Offsite.

Now in its third installment, Sight Unseen Offsite – organised by Monica Khemsurov and Jill Singer's titular trend-predicting website – was located this time across an empty office floor of the Grace Building facing Bryant Park, and was chock-full of hand-crafted, youthful designs. The show was armed with a host of fun surprises, lurking behind every corner: from design-forward children’s furniture by Kinder Modern – whose geometric modular rugs formed an interactive chessboard, with stools-cum-chess pieces designed by Matthew Sullivan of AQQ Design – to Bower’s deco-echo hall of mirrors, the jewellery-like pendant lamps of Jean-Pascal Gauthier and ‘Topo’, an immersive environment of foam-rollers backed by a soundbath, designed by architects Leong Leong for Ford.

Over at Wanted Design’s usual Manhattan haunt of the former Tunnel nightclub, innovation seemed to be the name of the game. 2016 American Design Honors winner Steven Haulenbeek introduced a new series of resin-bonded sand vessels and étageres, that emerged after he spotted the bronze foundry next to his Chicago studio discarding the beachy material. He also showed his ‘Ice-Cast Bronze’ tables and vases, made by bonding bronze into ice molds and allowing the molten material to capture ice’s naturally fragmented texture.

'Pole Position', a best-of showcase from Poland, featured a slew of young designers reimagining the output of the nation’s numerous ceramics factories, including the gorgeous 'Touch of Blue' series from Cmielów Design Studio, working at the 223-year old porcelain factory in Chodzież. Visual Magnetics, who recently teamed up with Dusen Dusen to create a movable modular wall coverings, introduced the wonderfully useful 'Polarity Collection' in collaboration with Studio Visibility, that features a new ‘invisi-lock’ system of shelves, catch boxes and marker holders on a moveable, magnetic, writable workplace system.

At its Brooklyn outpost in Industry City, Wanted Design created a Franco-American cultural exchange program, wherein designers were paired with manufacturers to devise a new product. Here, Ligne-Roset teamed up with Marc Thorpe to design a canopy seat which, while only supposed to be a prototype, has been picked up by the successful French furniture company.

Although known for mixing bathroom fixtures, quartz manufacturers and independent design firms, ICFF had a strong turn this year with a selection of sophisticated design offerings that really stood out. Flavor Paper’s collaboration with the egregiously overlooked art director Wayne White (known for his sets on PeeWee’s Playhouse) took shape as a cheeky pastoral mural-cum-wallpaper called ‘Waynetopia’. The Brooklyn-born lighting studio Rich Brilliant Willing collaborated with David Rockwell on three new LED fixtures of reinterpreted geometric forms, in luxe metals. Umbra Shift presented new additions to its line of thoughtfully designed home accessories, while Egg Collective and Volk both presented new furniture pieces that seamlessly combined expert craftsmanship with sophisticated design. 

It was also a big week for Apparatus, who presented a sexy, streamlined booth featuring a sculptural umbrella and coat stand, together with its brass-and-blown-glass 'Tassel' pendants and marble 'Portal' table, alongside the opening of its sumptuous new showroom/studio (opens in new tab), just a few blocks away.

Sight Unseen Offsite, now in its third installment, was located this time across an empty office floor of the Grace Building, chock-full of hand-crafted, youthful designs. Pictured: Bower’s deco-echo hall of mirrors

Sight Unseen Offsite, now in its third installment, was located this time across an empty office floor of the Grace Building, chock-full of hand-crafted, youthful designs. Pictured: Bower’s deco-echo hall of mirrors

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

A collection of jewellery-like pendant lamps by the Montreal-based designer Jean-Pascal Gauthier, at Sight Unseen Offsite.

A collection of jewellery-like pendant lamps by the Montreal-based designer Jean-Pascal Gauthier, at Sight Unseen Offsite.

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

The online art gallery Uprise Art brought along objects by Dana Bechert, Matthew Ward, Lindsey Hampton (among others) – and a series of paintings by Chad Kouri as well.

The online art gallery Uprise Art brought along objects by Dana Bechert, Matthew Ward, Lindsey Hampton (among others) – and a series of paintings by Chad Kouri as well.

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

Kinder Modern created an interactive chessboard formed by geometric modular rugs and stools-cum-chess pieces designed by several contemporary designers, including Matthew Sullivan of AQQ Design

Kinder Modern created an interactive chessboard formed by geometric modular rugs and stools-cum-chess pieces designed by several contemporary designers, including Matthew Sullivan of AQQ Design

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

The Latvian designer German Ermičs debuted his collection of 'Ombré Mirrors'.

The Latvian designer German Ermičs debuted his collection of 'Ombré Mirrors'.

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

'Norway x New York' saw designers from both locales collaborate on new products.

'Norway x New York' saw designers from both locales collaborate on new products. Curated by Sight Unseen, the combinations include lighting by Ladies & Gentlemen Studio and Vera Kyte, ceramics by Morten & Jonas and Assembly, and furniture by Hallgeir Homstvedt and Jonah Takagi.

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

Tantuvi, a New York-based studio working with textile cooperatives in India

Tantuvi, a New York-based studio working with textile cooperatives in India, debuted new furniture and a 30-ft-long dhurrie runner.

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

Fernando Mastrangelo presented new pieces under his MMaterial line

Fernando Mastrangelo presented new pieces under his MMaterial line – a more muted, but no less dramatic development of his studio collection

(Image credit: Fernando Mastrangelo)

Casa International worked with the Belgian architect Bernard Dubois on a four-piece collection of wooden vases

Casa International worked with the Belgian architect Bernard Dubois on a four-piece collection of wooden vases – each inspired by a different season

(Image credit: Bernard Dubois)

Crosby Studios, founded by Harry Nuriev and Dmitry Vorontsov, debuted its first collection of steel chairs and shelving

Crosby Studios, founded by Harry Nuriev and Dmitry Vorontsov, debuted its first collection of steel chairs and shelving – all made in Brooklyn

(Image credit: Crosby Studios)

The architecture firm Leong Leong designed ‘Topo’, an immersive environment of foam-rollers backed by a soundbath, for Ford.

The architecture firm Leong Leong designed ‘Topo’, an immersive environment of foam-rollers backed by a soundbath, for Ford.

(Image credit: Pippa Drummond)

ceramics

At Wanted Design, 'Pole Position' offered a best-of showcase from Poland, featured a slew of young designers reimagining the output of the Slavic nation’s numerous ceramics factories, including the 'Touch of Blue' series (pictured) from Cmielów Design Studio.

(Image credit:  Courtesy of Wanted Design)

2016 American Design Honors winner Steven Haulenbeek introduced a new series of resin-bonded sand vessels and étageres that emerged after he spotted the bronze foundry next to his Chicago studio discarding the material.

2016 American Design Honors winner Steven Haulenbeek introduced a new series of resin-bonded sand vessels and étageres that emerged after he spotted the bronze foundry next to his Chicago studio discarding the material.

(Image credit: Wanted Design)

Visual Magnetics introduced the 'Polarity Collection', in collaboration with Studio Visibility

Visual Magnetics introduced the 'Polarity Collection', in collaboration with Studio Visibility, that features a new ‘invisi-lock’ system of shelves, catch boxes and marker holders, on a moveable, magnetic, writable workplace system.

(Image credit: Visual Magnetics)

Over at Wanted Design's outpost in Brooklyn, Ligne-Roset joined forces with Marc Thorpe

Over at Wanted Design's outpost in Brooklyn, Ligne-Roset joined forces with Marc Thorpe

(Image credit: Wanted Design)

At ICFF, the Brooklyn-based studio Pelle presented two new lighting designs, the alluring 'Lure' (left) and more futuristic 'Pris' (right).

At ICFF, the Brooklyn-based studio Pelle presented two new lighting designs, the alluring 'Lure' (left) and more futuristic 'Pris' (right).

(Image credit: Pelle)

The Toronto design company Umbra Shift added numerous offerings to its already tasteful collection of furniture and accessories.

The Toronto design company Umbra Shift added numerous offerings to its already tasteful collection of furniture and accessories. These included Earnest Studio and Emilie Pallard's 'Deuce Pitcher/Watering Can' hybrid (left) and Ferréol Babin's 'Triplet' shelf (right)

(Image credit: Earnest Studio and Emilie Pallard)

Brooklyn's Volk Furniture showed off a flair for fine handcraftsmanship with its 'St Charles' vanity table (pictured)

Brooklyn's Volk Furniture showed off a flair for fine handcraftsmanship with its 'St Charles' vanity table (pictured)

(Image credit: St Charles)

Rich Brilliant Willing revealed new designs, including their 'Cinema' chandelier (pictured)...

Rich Brilliant Willing revealed new designs, including their 'Cinema' chandelier (pictured)...

(Image credit: Rich Brilliant Willing)

... and a collaborative collection with Rockwell Group that includes the 'Witt' chandelier (left) and the 'Notch' sconce (right)

... and a collaborative collection with Rockwell Group that includes the 'Witt' chandelier (left) and the 'Notch' sconce (right)

(Image credit: Rockwell Group)

Among new pieces by Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance and textiles by Anabela Chan, Bernhardt Design also presented the new 'Mellow' sofa (pictured)

Among new pieces by Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance and textiles by Anabela Chan, Bernhardt Design also presented the new 'Mellow' sofa (pictured) from the young French designer Océane Delain, which boasts an adjustable cord system to allow it to be customised for comfort

(Image credit: Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance & Anabela Chan)

A view of Flavor Paper's vibrant ICFF booth, featuring art director Wayne White's cheeky pastoral mural-cum-wallpaper

A view of Flavor Paper's vibrant ICFF booth, featuring art director Wayne White's cheeky pastoral mural-cum-wallpaper, called ‘Waynetopia’ 

(Image credit: Design & Interiors)

Lambert & Fils collaborated with Quebec glass blowers Laurent to create a collection of art deco-inspired pendant lamps that cut a modern figure

Lambert & Fils collaborated with Quebec glass blowers Laurent to create a collection of art deco-inspired pendant lamps that cut a modern figure

(Image credit: press)

Good Thing's colourful range of affordable design accessories included these new 'Platform Bowls' by founder Jamie Wolfond

Good Thing's colourful range of affordable design accessories included these new 'Platform Bowls' by founder Jamie Wolfond

(Image credit: Jamie Wolfond)

Coil + Drift's sophisticated collection of furniture and lighting blends balanced curves and elegant geometry with natural materials. Its six-legged 'Sylva' daybed is made from white oak and features brass levelers.

Coil + Drift's sophisticated collection of furniture and lighting blends balanced curves and elegant geometry with natural materials. Its six-legged 'Sylva' daybed is made from white oak and features brass levelers.

(Image credit: Sean Santiago)

The Ohio-based furniture company Sauder Boutique showcased a range of affordable, contemporary furniture with industrial overtones, like its 'New Prairie' shelf (pictured)

The Ohio-based furniture company Sauder Boutique showcased a range of affordable, contemporary furniture with industrial overtones, like its 'New Prairie' shelf (pictured)

(Image credit: Sauder Boutique)

New products include a sculptural umbrella and coat stand (right), alongside its brass-and-blown-glass Tassel pendants and black marble Portal table (left).

It has been a big week for Apparatus, who unveiled a new studio/showroom while also presenting a sexy, streamlined booth. New products include a sculptural umbrella and coat stand (right), alongside its brass-and-blown-glass Tassel pendants and black marble Portal table (left)

(Image credit: Joseph de Leo)

Gcouncil Drift Stools

Rounded edges are the order of the day for these Drift stools, which have been designed by the multidiscplinary, San Francisco-based design firm Branch, for Council

(Image credit: multidiscplinary)

Gaperture Arcing Walllamp

Allied Maker's Arcing wall lamp (pictured) is also available as a sconce and table lamp version. All three cut  an equally captivating figure

(Image credit: Allied Maker)

Debra Folz's 'Drape' tables cleverly referenced the fall of fabrics over furniture with powder-coated, pastel-toned finishes

Debra Folz's 'Drape' tables cleverly referenced the fall of fabrics over furniture with powder-coated, pastel-toned finishes 

(Image credit: Debra Folz)

Design lurked around all areas of town. At The Line, the Los Angeles-based lighting studio Atelier de Troupe presented a shiny new table lamp

Design lurked around all areas of town. At The Line, the Los Angeles-based lighting studio Atelier de Troupe presented a shiny new table lamp

(Image credit: Atelier de Troupe)

tambour by Poritz & Studio (left) and a vanity by KWH Furniture (right)

The co-operative design showroom Colony, located on the edge of Tribeca, created an immersive installation of new works from its catalogue of designers, including a tambour by Poritz & Studio (left) and a vanity by KWH Furniture (right). 

(Image credit: David Pinter)

marble coffee table by Fort Standard and lighting by Allied Maker also tempted the eye

Woven textiles by Meg Callahan (hanging on wall), a marble coffee table by Fort Standard and lighting by Allied Maker also tempted the eye.

(Image credit: David Pinter)

USM proved that it's not just about storage solutions with a limited edition range of bar carts, created specially with some of New York's biggest mixology names

USM proved that it's not just about storage solutions with a limited edition range of bar carts, created specially with some of New York's biggest mixology names

(Image credit: press)

a cart designed with St John Frizell of Fort Defiance

Pictured left: a cart designed with St John Frizell of Fort Defiance. Right: a cart created with Ivy Mix, the American Bartender of the Year 2015

(Image credit: press)

Foscarini transformed its Soho showroom into a colourful, Alice in Wonderland-style installation, complete with its 'Giants' collection

Foscarini transformed its Soho showroom into a colourful, Alice in Wonderland-style installation, complete with its 'Giants' collection

(Image credit: Foscarini )

IC Lights and String Lights

Michael Anastassiades has overseen the redesign of Flos' Soho showroom, turning the space into a showcase for his latest lighting creations, such as the Captain Flint, Extra T, IC Lights and String Lights. The minimal, geometrically-lead design articulates Anastassiades' signature sense of balance and flair for visual poetry to great aplomb

(Image credit: Michael Anastassiades)

INFORMATION

For more details on all of the fairs, please visit NYCxDesign’s website (opens in new tab)