News for Cologne – from Böwer to Zeitraum
Jan 13, 2015

It’s the season to be merry for all the interior design buffs: With Christmas only just over, they can look forward to a new festive week: It’s only a few days before manufacturers and designers at this year’s imm cologne will be revealing their 2015 innovations in the showrooms and at the Passagen. And we have been noticing with glee that the number of exhibitors opted for Cologne as a platform to showcase their innovations is once again up on recent years. This prompted us to give you an exclusive roundup of what’s new before you make your way to Cologne and set your eyes on the real thing. So which re-editions are being dragged from the archives this year? In which pots of paint did manufacturers decide to dip their products? What new liaisons between designers and manufacturers are going to be the talk of town this year? So, enjoy browsing our selection of up-and-coming innovations! (mm)

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Give me a lift
Degenhardt for Böwer
As in previous years in 2015 Eric Degenhardt is once again represented at Böwer. The Cologne designer presents “Lift”, an upholstered chair that could be aptly termed a “chair-to-go” given its being extremely lightweight and very useful features. A handle on the backrest means that the chair can be moved with just one hand. “Lift” is Böwer’s and Degenhardt’s answer to flexible interiorscapes and lifestyles; after all, as Degenhardt clearly demonstrates, to date the majority of upholstered chairs has been heavy and thus cumbersome to position in the room. By contrast, at a little short of 7 kilograms, “Lift” weighs in pretty much the same as a six-pack of bottled water – almost anyone is able to carry that. Its functional character set aside, thanks to its fabric covers by Kvadrat or Rohi “Lift” is supreme eye-candy for every living environment. NB: Another joint success by Böwer and Degenhardt.

At imm cologne you’ll find Böwer in Hall 3.2, at booth D 34

Sinking into a sedan
Neri & Hu for ClassiCon
The sedan chair was once the prime means of transportation for high-ranking and wealthy people in almost all countries of the world. Particularly in China, where it was known as “jiao”, the sedan chair enjoyed an extremely long lease of life, spanning the Han Dynasty all the way to the 1940s. So it makes sense that Chinese architects and designers Lyndon Neri and Rossana Hu (their company Neri & Hu is the brain behind “Das Haus” at this year’s imm cologne) have chosen “Sedan” as the name for their chair, which is brought out as an edition by ClassiCon and completed by the “Sedan Felt”. After all, Neri & Hu forever aspire to link Chinese traditions and modern design in their work. At first glance the “Sedan Chair” appears very simple, yet at second sight it reveals a highly sophisticated structure, precisely where the plastic seat shell meets the frame and wraps around the squared timber beams like smooth fabric.

You’ll find ClassiCon in Hall 11.2, at booth H 30

Big Foot
e15 is celebrating
It was 15 years ago that two guys got together in London to write a piece of contemporary German design history: Florian Asche and Philipp Mainzer founded e15, which takes its name from the postal code of London’s Hackney district where the studio was first located. Since then it has relocated twice: First to the Taunus town of Oberursel, and then again when Philipp Mainzer and his team (Asche left the company in 2006) set up shop in an old red-brick factory building in Frankfurt’s east. Even though today the firm has some 150 products in its portfolio, it has remained loyal to its roots and continues to produce in small selected crafts workshops. To mark the anniversary a special limited edition of “Bigfoot” (94 pieces) designed by artist Geoff McFetridge will see the light of day. The underside of the table, which is e15’s first-ever design, features laser-cut artwork by the Los Angeles illustrator that makes reference to the legend of “Bigfoot” – a hairy creature with oversized feet that is said to live in the mountains of the United States.

You’ll find e15 in Hall 3.2, at booth E 30

Greta for Greta
Gubi is looking to L.A.
In the 1930s, Greta Grossman from Sweden was one of the first women to make a name for herself in the world of industrial and furniture design, which was at the time still a decidedly male domain. Her trailblazing designs, playful combinations of wood and metal, were without doubt ahead of their time. Take, for example, the luminaires “Grasshopper” and “Cobra” with their cone-shaped or shell-like shades, or the items of office furniture in her “62 Series”, which are made of walnut wood and stand out for their emblematic ball feet. Danish manufacturer Gubi has been re-issuing the edition since 2011. After moving to Los Angeles together with her husband (jazz musician Billy Grossman), in the 1940s Grossman also designed a number of private homes for the likes of Greta Garbo and Frank Sinatra, and embellished the interiors with items from her own seating furniture range, for example sofas and chairs from the 1949 “Modern Line”, which Gubi is bringing out as a new edition this year.

You’ll find Gubi in Hall 3.2, at booth E 20

New precious pieces
Pierre Paulin at Ligne Roset
Back in spring 1953, Pierre Paulin showcased his ideal apartment at the “Arts Ménager” exhibition in Paris: It contained functional and affordable interiors in the then popular American and Scandinavian styles, which Paulin had created with young families in mind. Pierre Paulin, who died in 2009 aged 82, chose Ligne Roset as the editor for his first collection. Now the company, which has already brought out 14 designs as editions, is once again set to save a whole host of precious Paulin pieces from oblivion. For the project it even went so far as to consult with Pierre Paulin’s widow Maia Paulin and their son Benjamin. Re-editions include “Daybed”, a sofa that can be transformed into a bed, the wall-mounted bureau “Le Sécretaire Murale”, and the “TV” chair, which graced the cover of “La Maison Française” no. 72 in 1953. Also on show: the “CM 191” coffee table, “Andy” sofa and lounge chair, and “La Bibliothèque Fil” bookcase. The latter has been a one-off in Pierre and Maia Paulin’s home until now.

You’ll find Ligne Roset in Hall 11.3, at booth O 20/P 21

Little garage
Richard Lampert stays versatile
Richard Lampert has always loved kids: Be it the re-edition of the Egon Eiermann children’s table, the “Turtle” desk chair, his “Wonderbox” or his “Rocker” rocking horse shaped like an egg timer. The children’s furniture made by the Stuttgart-based design enthusiast somewhat resembles both the man himself and his collection: They’re idiosyncratic and decidedly colorful. Now there’s a new kid on the block, too: Lampert has expanded the “Famille Garage” furniture series to include a children’s bed. It is sized 70cm to 120cm in length and can be used by infants and teenagers alike, as the side rods can be removed and the height of the bed surface adjusted. Like the “Famille Garage” little sisters – the wrapping table and the set of seats – the children’s bed is made of five-ply pine/spruce boards and was designed by Alexander Seifried. A prime addition to the first “workshop” in life.

You’ll find Richard Lampert in Hall 11.2 at booth J 10

Snap and Patch
with Nya Nordiska
Nya Nordiska has given its fabrics a real fillip: The novel button and wire system called “Snap” means curtains can be hung at the turn of a wrist, while “Patch” enables you to tailor your blinds to the size needed using a gathering system. “Snap” features not rings inserted into the top of the curtain but an adhesive strip that is ironed onto the fabric. The wire can be adjusted as required at the suspension points. In this context, “Tape”, “Tie” and “Rope” as well as “Patch” are not just functions, but also give the curtains (or the blinds) visual accents of their own, for example in the form of neon tones or five other color variations. These new special aids definitely sit well with the textile collection that’s the newcomer to the Nya Nordiska world, namely “Creative Concept”, that sets the pixels dancing and brings summer into the home in the form of colors such as heavenly blue, lemon yellow, and kiwi green.

You’ll find Nya Nordiska in Hall 3.2 at booth E10

Profile by Willenz
Stattmann Neue Möbel
Not one but two premieres in Cologne for Stattmann Neue Möbel: For the first time, siblings Nicola and Oliver Stattmann are taking the stage at the imm cologne with their furniture collection made in Germany – and are taking the new “Profile Table” along with them. An ideal companion to “Profile Chair”, it was likewise created by Belgian designer Sylvain Willenz. Like the chair, the table is made of solid ash gained from sustainable forestry. It has a very matter-of-fact feel to it, very pragmatic and sound, destined surely to be an all-rounder. It comes in three versions, one rectangular 80 x 160 centimeters, and two round either 122 or 94 cm in diameter – and available with a white, red, blue-black or clear lacquer. This solid down-to-earth item comes with an added shot of comfort: The legs slot into the top and are fixed in place by four screws, the legs have stops made of natural rubber, and are therefore especially sparing on your floor.

You’ll find Stattmann Neue Möbel in Hall 2.2 at booth L 26

Thonet’s lounge armchair
Kleine, Kürschner and no. 808
So where’s the bentwood? Or the tubular steel? Anyone viewing Thonet’s new lounge armchair that proudly bears “no. 808” is sure to rub their eyes in disbelief: What? This is a Thonet! The company from Frankenberg specially engaged the services of designers Claudia Kleine and Jörg Kürschner from Munich’s Formstelle label. Their “re-interpretation of the winged armchair” plays with the opposites of feeling hugged and a sense of openness, softness and hardness. The shell thus embraces the sitter and provides security while nevertheless offering a great free view of the surroundings. The soft, quilted upholstery contrasts clearly with the hard plastic shell, which is itself especially light as it is made using an innovative rotation injection process. Moreover, the “808” can be smoothly set in different positions; the “Soul” covers were purpose-developed by textile makers Rohi for the “808”, consist of pure wool and are available in 13 different color variations. Optionally, the armchair can be supplied in leather or molded fleece. The base-frame comes in flat steel, tubular steel or wood combined with bentwood. So Thonet remains Thonet after all!

You’ll find Thonet in Hall 3.2 at booth E 21

High-end hides
Walter Knoll sticks with leather
It all started back in 1865 as leatherware merchants in downtown Stuttgart. A few years later the company founder Wilhelm Knoll included the first upholstered furniture in the company’s product line and swiftly emerged as suppliers to the Royal Court of Württemberg. Since then, Walter Knoll has concentrated on upholstered furniture with high-grade leather and most recently won over the planners at the European Central Bank, who selected Walter Knoll products for the majority of the new offices. On the occasion of its 150th anniversary year, Walter Knoll is presenting new seating created by Claudio Bellini, Pearson Lloyd and Austrian designer duo EOOS, who not only dreamed up the two heavyweight marble side tables “Joco Stone” and “Tama”, but also the expansion of the “Jaan Living” line to include a modular sofa system with spacious glass tables or leather covers.

You’ll find Walter Knoll at Hall 11.2, booth H 21/ H 11

Placed on new feet
Wogg gives a classic a fresh look
Wogg has taken a close look at its products and discerned that there’s room for even more. The designers focused in particular on a classic from the company’s portfolio, namely the sideboard and cupboard series created by Benny Mosimann. They’ve been part of the program since 1997, and have now been placed on new feet, or rather enriched to include new, practical additional options. The vertical cupboard can now wave (wing doors), the sideboard is exceptionally open (sets of shelves) and the office cupboard will soon be the new favorite at work (thanks to drawers and a file cradle). To make sure there’s no mistaking it, the revised line also gets a new family name: “Liva”. Sometimes a little bit of tweaking helps even a long-standing relationship.

You’ll find Wogg in Hall 3.2 at booth E 49

Lounge feeling at table
dining with Zeitraum
Shells of different shapes are the in-thing in the design world. Is that because we want to be embraced and protected? Or are the various shells reminiscent of car seats? Be that as it may, Zeitraum has gone for the best of the shell world, on two fronts. The “Morph” product family launched in 2011 and consisting of a chair, a lounge armchair, a stool, a bar stool, a foot stool and a children’s chair henceforth boasts a two-seat settee and a sofa. The latter is doubly special as Zeitraum has developed a two-seater that is upright and high enough to enable the sitters to claim their rightful places at the dining table. Zeitraum, which this year is celebrating its 25th anniversary, offers the following explanation: “We have settees, sofas and seating worlds, but do not use them anywhere near often enough. ‘Morph Duo Dining’ brings the comfort of a lounge to the dining room. ‘Morph Duo Dining’ changes set seating habits.” Well, let’s just hope the TV doesn’t end up on the dining table.

You’ll find Zeitraum at the Design Post