A modern a apartment building that challenges perception of depth and stance. Located on Queen Street West in Toronto, named one of this year's trendiest neighborhoods. The strip is home to over 300 galleries, shops, design houses, boutique hotels and restaurants. Could this convention-defying area be the next West Village?
Drift, by @matthiaspliessnig. White oak and bamboo, Smithsonian American Art Museum (Renwick Gallery).
Matthias Pliessnig's extraordinary amorphous furniture has its unlikely roots in the history of wooden boat-building. While studying at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Pliessnig, fellow student Benjamin Wooten, and professor Tom Loeser embarked on a project to each build a simple skiff for use on the town's surrounding lakes. Muddling through the basics of marine design required learning to steam-bend wood, an ancient technique that effectively boils the resin inside wood, rendering the stock malleable. Use of steam-bending is evident in the shape of boat hulls across the globe but has only influenced furniture design sporadically, including the eighteenth-century development of the Windsor chair and the nineteenth-century catalogue of the Austrian firm Gebrüder Thonet.
The pace of this work necessitated by this process is frenetic, but it is not improvisational. Pliessnig designs his pieces using Rhinoceros 3-D software before attempting to recreate the designs in wood. Because the program cannot account for the limitations of organic materials, the transition from screen to object can be enormously challenging. Pliessnig has stated that Drift includes his most difficult bends to date. This also is only the third piece to include pegged joints, the others being Rivulet (with bamboo) and Amada (with birch), both in private collections. Although the pegs appear to offer structural reinforcement, the sheer number of points of contact in Pliessnig's work (approximately 7000 in Drift) makes it incredibly strong, and the pegs serve more as a labor-intensive embellishment.
📝: @renwickgallery / @smithsonian