design folio

Photography by Shinichi Maruyama

Claire Sullivan - Monday, April 13, 2009

Ok so it's getting pretty obvious that I am obsessed with the Japanese aesthetic. I am continually impressed by the work that Japanese artists and designers create. Their simplicity of form is something that immediately appeals to me. I am also a huge fan of photography as an art form, so it's no surprise that when I came across New York based photographer Shinichi Maruyama I was blown away. Maruyama draws inspiration from his youth when he often wrote Chinese characters using sumi ink. Once the brush touches the paper the character must be finished in one stroke, there is only one chance to get it right. Using similar brush stroke techniques Maruyama hurls black India ink into water and photographs the millisecond that these two liquids collide. Capable of capturing this phenomenon at a 7,500th of a second, Maruyama takes full advantage of a recent advancement in strobe light technology which can record physical events faster than the naked eye can perceive them. In the above series Kusho, which means “writing in the sky,” Maruyama’s goal is to arrest in space and time the sublime intersection of two different media before they merge into one. Simply stunning.

See more of ShinichiMaruyama's work here.

Martin the Mule

Claire Sullivan - Monday, April 13, 2009

Martin The Mule is a new workstation concept from French design studio i-bride. One of my favourite adjectives seems more appropriate here - Moose, which I tend to use when describing something a oppressive . In saying that however I can imagine that Martin could find himself welcome lodgings in a children's room. Martin's design allows for storage of books and papers on the various shelves on his body, while the reins are actually cunningly disguised wires and cables.

Ron Arad's reinventions

Claire Sullivan - Monday, April 13, 2009
Israel born Ron Arad's masterful reinterpretation of the chair continues with his new exhibition at the Timothy Taylor Gallery in London. The Thumbprint chair above is comprised of multiple bronze and stainless steel rods that produce a jewel-like shimmer as the light shifts, revealing subtle gradations of colour. Visit to view other works from this exhibition.


Claire Sullivan - Sunday, April 12, 2009

Some of the best creative ideas start out on napkins, so why not start your innovation with accuracy!

Daniel Loves Objects

Claire Sullivan - Saturday, April 11, 2009

Singapore based designer Daniel Loves Objects has created a thoughtful series of works titled WARS & WITS & POWER. Referencing a certain country who's not taken kindly to being told to disarm their missile test launch programs, the series features a bookcase with a strategic golden army placed underneath, upholding and protecting the countries plans for dominance. Visually this is outstanding work, made more impressive by its strong cultural statement.
To see more of  Daniel Loves Objects work, view his portfolio here. 

Reinterpreting Zanotta

Claire Sullivan - Saturday, April 11, 2009
International research laboratory Fabrica will present their exhibition Trans-forma at the Milan Fair. The exhibition will showcase the outcomes when Fabrica's young designers have the opportunity to reinterpret classic Zanotta pieces. 17 of Zanotta's designs will be given a new twist in the exhibition, the classic Zanotta coat stand (above) originally designed in 1973 has been updated to provide a number of useful tools for gardening.
Zanotta is available locally at Studio Italia.

Helix Hotel Abu Dhabi

Claire Sullivan - Friday, April 10, 2009

New York based Lesser Architecture have won a competition to design the Helix Hotel to be built in Zayed Bay, Abu Dhabi. The Hotel is positioned adjacent to the currently under construction and highly anticipated serpentine Sheik Zayed Bridge designed by Zaha Hadid. The name Helix makes reference to the staggered floor plates which will keep public spaces always in flux with no two rooms positioned across from one another having exact views to the other side. As with most hotels in this region, luxury is paramount, a reversed fountain will drop water from the ceiling down through the void into the lower lobby. The roof top will feature a full sized glass bottom swimming pool where the swimmers will be visible from eight floors below at ground level. 

Tom Dixon's Utility collection

Claire Sullivan - Friday, April 10, 2009

Tom Dixon's collection for this years Milan Fair entitled Utility, is a continuation of his exploration into the robustness and longevity of design. Products in the new  collection include pressed glass lighting and stone top tables. Dixon has become a master of the simple, his design focus more directed upon construction, finishes and materials that deliver honest design outcomes.

Tom Dixon's work is available locally at ECC.

Regal matters

Claire Sullivan - Thursday, April 09, 2009
This genius little number makes quite clear the power and significance of the head of the table.  Designed by Gumdesign for Silik this table forms part of their new collection to be launched at the Milan Furniture Fair. To learn more about the designers click here.

Campana brothers reinvigorate Athens

Claire Sullivan - Thursday, April 09, 2009
What do you get when you mix Brazilian spirit with Greek culture? A new hotel in Athens will soon showcase the results. The Yes hotel has commissioned the creative force that is the Campana brothers to create objects that will help to reinterpret the old Olympic Palace Hotel originally built in 1958, and considered by many to be one of the best examples of modernist architecture in Athens. The Campana brothers are renowned for their ability to reuse and reinterpret materials and culture from their surrounds, so their take on a different culture will be of interest to the design community. The brothers have formed a local workshop in Athens and have employed an imaginative group of Greek postgraduate students of architecture to work alongside them. Above are some examples of chairs that are being reinterpreted for the restaurant of the hotel. The idea is that part of the original chair remains whilst hybrid additions are added for a new contextual meaning. The hotel is set to open early 2010.
Read more about this project at