Clear cork

Studio Niruk, in collaboration with the label Cork Units, have designed four interior products that show that the natural material cork can also offer a graphic aesthetic.

"We keep our eyes open and get stuck on something we find interesting: Whether material, manufacturing process or haptically pleasant texture. It's about a perception of aesthetics as we understand it - anything can be relevant," say Nina Ruthe and David Antonin of the Niruk design studio. They recently got stuck on a natural material: cork. In collaboration with the Portuguese label Cork Units, the designer duo has designed four products: the wall hook "Portobello", the wall shelf "Corkboard", the swing "Balanco" and the side table "Play". The clear shapes of the objects correspond harmoniously with the visually and haptically warm material. As a contrast, the "Play Side Table" has a powder-coated base made of folded metal that serves as storage space - for magazines, for example.

In the production process, Nina Ruthe and David Antonin used both the "virgin cork", the thinner and coarser cork bark of the first peeling, and the harvest of the following layers. The result is an exciting material structure. "The challenge was to design objects made of cork that do not appear conventional, but have a look and feel that fits in with the present day," says Nina Ruthe. In addition to the pleasantly clear aesthetics, Studio Niruk's products have other advantages that the natural material itself brings to the design process: it is sustainable, sound-absorbing and light. (am)