In the frame: standout designs from around the globe

In the frame: standout designs from around the globe

Racing start
23 January

High design meets lightweight technology in the newest Nike running shoe – Nike Epic React Flyknit. Its minimalist focus reflects its functions, using a lightweight cushioning foam with maximum energy return. ‘That unique React Foam pattern was created after thousands of iterations, which were made possible because we’ve used computational design,’ says Nike's senior director for global running footwear, Bret Schoolmeester. ‘The final design makes the midsole softer in areas where runners exert higher pressure and more stable near the edges and sidewall where runners need increased stability’. And its a treat for the eyes too – the rippling pattern together with the stokes of blue and neon pink at the rear of the model (available in a white version too) adds a certain playful energy, while maintaining its three goals – flexibility, breathability and support.

The Nike Epic React Flyknit will be available 22 February from Nike

Writer: Sujata Burman

Culture Crossing
17 January

Design brand Ariake launched last year with a unique concept of connecting two Japanese furniture manufactures – Legnatec and Hirata Chair – with an international roster of design talent (Anderssen & Voll & Gabriel Tan to name a few). Next up is Norm Architects, who have launched a chair and sofa that are set to show at Stockholm Furniture Fair next month. For Ariake, the Danish firm joined forces with Brazil-based architect Marcio Kogan (StudioMK27) to realise the ‘Braid’ sofa (pictured). The cultural merging is evident from its design – the modernist structure is inspired by Danish cabinetmakers furniture, while the intricate details, like the bamboo construction and tatami mats, echo Eastern influences.

Writer: Sujata Burman

Rock science
8 January

East London-based Studio Furthermore was inspired by the rocks, earth and mineral ores of Iceland for its ‘Replica’ series. The ceramics and aluminium alloy collection – currently on show at London’s Aram Gallery – is reminiscent of foamy lava rocks, created through scientific experimentation whereby a copy of the original product is the end-product we see. The range of standing lights, mirrors, pots and tables is coupled with examples of the studio’s tests and a film that takes individuals through the process at the Drury Lane space.

‘Replica’ is on view until 20 January. The Aram Gallery, 110 Drury Lane, WC2B 5SG. Photography: Amandine Alessandra. Writer: Sujata Burman

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