Muller van Severen, A Furniture Project by Fien Muller and Hannes Van Severen
I’ve been thinking about making some of my own furniture over the last few days, maybe drawing up some concepts and playing around with different woods or metals. This has probably come about due to an interview I watched a few days ago featuring Ward Bennett, the popular American designer, artist and sculptor. In this specific interview, which is nearly 30 minutes long, he discusses his story, inspiration and his design process in terms of furniture. He goes on to say that he designs his furniture by using a piece of cardboard, taking strong photographic clips and clipping it around to create a canvas for him to draw and cut out the most functional and desired shape. Basically likening his furniture to sculpture, saying it is no different and would be almost the same process. This concept of literally taking a piece of card and making a chair is quite insane, and is something I’m definitely going to try as a starting point. I’ve never made a piece of furniture so this will be a first for me!
As I was looking around for inspiration I came across this fantastic furniture by Fien Muller and Hannes Van Severen, under the collective name Muller van Severen. They’re heavily inspired by the Bauhaus and Donald Judd, as you can imagine this was something that spoke out to me straight away as both are big inspirations for myself (although I do have many). To be fair when I saw these I instantly likened the furniture to the Bauhaus, a mix of playfulness with the quite strict, clean lines that they implemented. Overall it’s the ‘no fuss’ approach and could be labelled under the modernist category.
Reading through the Muller van Severen about page they say they’re using vibrant colours in a synthetic material to create a contrast with the tight form. Although I’m not generally one for bold statement colours, I found this an intriguing mix between the reduction of the form, basically just grid lines with added colour. This brings back images in my mind of Piet Mondrian and the De Stijl movement, embracing pure abstraction whilst using thick lines with primary block colours. Just brilliant. Hopefully you’ll enjoy these designs as much as I have whilst browsing their website, you should definitely pop along to have a look at these images in fullscreen as there’s plenty more.