What happens when 9 Norwegian designers are associated with 9 American retailers? See for yourself


The history of Scandinavian design does not end in the middle of the century, it is being written permanently. And this week, it’s possible to discover a new generation of designers when the “Norway x New York” exhibition opens in SoHo.

Heirloom Rug by Pettersen + Hein for Edward Fields. Sight Unseen writers that Heirloom “… embodies the surprises inherent in nature, from seed to plant. Its unique three-dimensional construction, which uses leftover yarn for durability, captures the beauty of a wild, wild garden.Photo: Courtesy of Sight Unseen

This is the fourth installment in a series of curations organized by online design magazine Sight Unseen and the Norwegian Consulate General, but the project has a new twist based on research by Monica Khemsurov and Jill Singer (founders magazine) who found that the new generation of designers interviewed wanted more than anything to be associated with an American retailer. And that’s what was done: nine Norwegian manufacturers were partnered with as many retailers in the US and tasked with creating prototypes to be considered for production.

Clap Clap Table by Stine Aas for Tortuga, a double-folding indoor table that can be positioned in three ways: fully folded to optimize storage space, partially open in a half-moon shape to accommodate 1 to 2 people, or fully open to seat up to 4 people.

Looking at the results, which include tables, airy room dividers, lamps, and more, it’s easy to imagine all of these designs appearing in a catalog. No teak was used in these projects, but in line with great Scandinavian design codes, natural materials, organic shapes and durability were taken into account in different ways. Nordic design, notes Khemsurov, “has an inordinate appeal to the rest of the world,” which is linked, she suggests, to its determination, democratic values ​​and understated aesthetic. She observed that the new generation of designers retains some of these values, but at the same time has a “more global design sensitivity”. (It also matches what happens in Nordic fashion: there is more color, experimentation, and openness to outside influences, but there is still a sense of purpose, a belief that good design should. function in everyday life.)


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