The collection includes K&B's Belcarra, a floor lamp that takes inspiration from metal caps that top seaside pilings in the coastal town from which the piece draws its name. Three steel posts cluster together to support a halo-like LED panel.
While at first glance, Chung’s Fromme chair may seem to be a typical rigid aluminum seat, however, the indoor/outdoor furniture piece can be completely knocked down and draws on ultra light camping gear and mountain bikes. Appearing to float above the frame, the seat is propped up by ball jointed polymer compression seats allowing it to pivot in response to users’ posture.
The Ontario-made Spun sconces - another by Chung - employ radial perforations in their 16 gauge steel reflectors to offer maximal visual impact with very few components.
It's the Keefer credenza though, a piece by Knauf and Brown, seems to be the attention grabber amongst the pieces presented. It does away with doors, instead making use of a bamboo beaded skirt to conceal the objects housed on its shelves along with the piece’s vertical support. It’s a feature that’s silly in the nicest sort of way, but executed in a sober matter navy manages to avoid gaudiness.
It’s this piece that got me thinking: I find myself using words like “whimsical” or “playful” frequently when describing work by young Canadian designers, and it never feels quite right - “irreverent” though, seems to imply a lack of care or consideration…Sarcasm, however, (usually of the self-mocking and contempt-free variety) stands out an integral part of the Canadian sense of humour, so I wonder, has this sarcastic sensibility crept its way into our design vocabulary too?
Take a look at Knauf and Brown and Tom Chung’s website for details on the rest of the pieces in the Expo Collection or see some other examples of Canadian design with a hint of refined sarcasm in past posts on Houseporn including Contemporary Cottaging in Ontario, Home Furnishings by Quebec's Six Point Un, and Contemporary Canadian Furnishing by Toronto's Hollis and Morris.
All images courtesy of the designers.
This piece was researched and written by Miranda Corcoran, a Toronto-based designer who recently completed studies in Industrial Design at OCAD University.