Vitra is one of the major chair manufacturers. It sits as a spider in its web partly in The North West part of Switzerland and partly in the South West part of Germany (Weil am Rhein). Its spider web has many lines into the design community, being it starchitects or graduates from universities or design academies.
One of such lines is with D & AD, a London Based Charity:
D&AD was founded (as British Design and Art Direction) in 1962 by a group of London-based designers & art directors including David Bailey, Terence Donovan, Alan Fletcher and Colin Forbes (who designed the original D&AD logo). The group was dedicated to celebrating creative communication, rewarding its practitioners, and raising standards across the industry.
D&AD annually issues awards for student design. Furniture was one of the 2008 subjects. This year it was sponsored by Vitra Edition.
According to Rolf Fehlbaum, its Chairman:
Vitra Edition is a laboratory that provides architects and designers with the freedom to create experimental furniture objects and interior installations. Their choices of materials, technologies, applications and formal concepts are not limited to the existing Vitra vocabulary, while they have full access to VitraÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s technical know-how. Working without the constraints of market and production logic has a liberating effect and results in surprising solutions and new ways of seeing design.
The Vitra brief reads as follows:
Design a sofa inspired by the new Vitra Edition collection that is unencumbered by commercial
constraints and pushes the boundaries of innovative furniture design.
- Displaying craftsmanship
- Innovative in form or/and function
- Use of new or unusual materials
- Breaking the mould, defying convention
Your design is aimed at collectors of art. Each Vitra Edition is strictly limited (usually to 12) and individually numbered and registered. As each piece in the range demands a high value in the market of anywhere between Ã‚Â£8,000 and Ã‚Â£130,000, your design should reflect this positioning.
The 2008 award winner is Charlotte Kingsnorth of Buckinghamshire New University.
She was inspired by the artwork of Jenny Saville and the media coverage of obesity. It is a simple beech wood frame being Ã¢â‚¬Å“devouredÃ¢â‚¬Â by its obese occupant, in this case an upholstered cushion.
Wow, I wonder whether she also has the honor of her chair being produced in a limited numbered edition by Vitra Edition…..then her name will be vested at once. Congratulations Charlotte!
Via Design Boom and Creative Review