Last season, Maison et Objet (18-22 January) changed its format, separating the show into two distinct categories: home interior, and objects and accessories.
With over 600 new brands on show, there is much on display this January from international players, including German designer Sebastian Herkner as guest of honor and flourishing talents from China, to new offerings beyond the fairground, at Parisian galleries in town.
Paris was the host city and welcomed with open arms this design exhibition. Now, it’s time to explore which luxury brands were the absolute epitome of this trade fair and the best highlights of Maison et Objet 2019.
The Canadian design label Molo presented amazing paper lamps at this year’s fair. I loved their soft cloud pendant lights made of paper. They nod to the Japanese tradition of paper lamps and emit a warm and soft glow while being like suspended in mid-air
Swirl by Tom Dixon
This family of bookends, vases and candleholders are a totemic addition to the British brand’s repertoire. Playfully paired and sculpturally stacked, the pieces aim to resemble 3D marbled paper, but offer the surprising weight of a stone object. The real material? A new cocktail of pigment, resin and recycled residue from the marble industry.
‘Nouveau’ by Bernhardt-Vella for Ex.t
Florentine bathroom brand Ex.t tap bathroom newcomers, Milan-based studio Bernhardt-Vella, for a collection that takes its cues from early 20th-century art deco. The range of asymmetric washbasins and cabinets are available in brass or black finishes for a shapely bathroom set. ‘We’ve translated a serene and discreet elegance into purity, with a balance of lines and shapes, lightness and airiness,’ the duo describe the contemporary collection that includes mirrors and invites multiple configurations.
‘Curl’ coat rack by Kaschkasch for Blomus
Sebastian Herkner as Designer of the Year
With 21 projects under his belt in 2018 alone, it was an easy decision for Maison et Objet to choose Herkner as star of the show. Based in Frankfurt, his work combines craft with a modern eye for color, and he showcases this in an installation at the fair. ‘Different cultures, skills and lifestyles all fuel my inspiration,’ he says of his breadth of work. Herkner also celebrates new launches at the fair including these new ‘Echino’ side tables with blown glass legs for Italian brand Zanotta.
Rising Talents Awards China
In September 2018, the Rising Talents Awards focused on Lebanese designers, while this January edition, Maison et Objet turns to the finest emerging designers in China. Frank Chou, Chen Furong, Mario Tsai, Hongjie Yang, Ximi Li and Bentu have been chosen for their dynamic contribution to the country’s creative scene.
‘With the rapid growth of the Chinese economy and the need for a cultural expression of its own, we see a large number of emerging designers that have started to create their own voice that deals with issue of heritage and identity,’ says jury member Lyndon Neri of Neri&Hu. Pictured, ‘The Middle Chair’ by Frank Chou takes its cues from traditional Chinese bamboo chairs that are adorned with a piece of metal at the end of the armrest.
Monaco by Uto Soulful lighting
Inspired by mobile art sculptures, these customizable suspension lights are a playful new launch from Portuguese brand Uto Soulful lighting. Made up of opaque glass globes and alternating brass elements, the different textures and shapes provide a unique silhouette that is as ornamental as it is functional.
‘Serie 01’ by Pool and Atelier François Pouenat at Gallery Joyce
Heritage brand Atelier François Pouenat joins forces with Paris-based duo Pool for an exhibition that explores how heritage metal craft combines with contemporary design vision. ‘Serie 01’ includes eight pieces by Paul Loebach, Fredrick Paulsen, Fabien Cappello and Pool themselves and ranges from shelving to benches, all made of aluminum, brass, steel, and more.
Philippe Malouin‘s furniture for SCP is based on whiskey barrels
Designer Philippe Malouin looked to wooden-slatted barrels for the bases of the furniture in the Barrel collection, his second for British furniture brand SCP.
The four-piece collection includes a dining table, a low coffee table, a bench and a stool that doubles up as a side table. Each item is made in Leiria, Portugal, using American white oak, with a lacquered finish.
Alliages Design creates storage towers of stacked cubes
Belgian design studio Alliages Design’s Toupie storage units are made up of a stack of open metal cubes attached to a vertical floor-to-ceiling pole.
The storage system can be configured to include between two and five cubes – each 36 centimetres squared – with the option to integrate trays and towel rails depending on the user’s needs.
The boxes pivot on an off-centre axis. Once installed, the user can spin each cube around to reveal the contents or to hide them away, and in doing so change the profile of the unit.
Front creates Resting Animals for Vitra
A resting bear, a curled up cat and a pair of sleeping birds are all part of Vitra’s new Resting Animals series, designed by Swedish studio Front.
The collection of sleeping animals made in wool and ceramics is the result of a recent research project by Front founders Anna Lindgren and Sofia Lagerkvist, which explored the close connection between humans and figurative objects.