Contemporary art and design

Anton Alvarez & Claire Anne O’Brien | 2014

Exhibition from 17.01 to 22.02.2014

Kissthedesign gallery is pleased to showcase a part of the exhibition « Neu/Vertraut-Alpine works and design in dialogue » after taking up a dialogue with traditional and historical examples in the Engadiner Museum in St.Moritz in 2013.
The point of departure of this show was the reappropriation of the Stabelle chair, an archetypical alpine chair, by contemporary designers. The curator Giovanna Lisignoli from the Happen Projects collective invited various designers, a.o Anton Alvarez, Claire Anne O’Brien, Florian Hauswirth, Martino Gamper, etc, to engage in an interaction with an industrially produced Stabelle with the aim to bring together contemporary design and alpine tradition. The projects provoke questions about the past and the current role of seating furniture and addresses the formal, cultural, and social space occupied by the traditional alpine chair. The chair becomes the point of interaction between the basic and the exclusive, the expected and surprising, the rural and urban.

The gallery Kissthedesign exhibits a selection of the « Neu/Vertraut » project, with the works by Anton Alvarez and Claire Anne O’Brien.

Anton Alvarez (*1980, Uppsala) is a Swedish-Chilean designer based in London.
Since graduating from the Royal College of Art, London in 2012, his work has been exhibited at the design Museum, London, Design Miami Basel 2013 (with Libby Sellers gallery), and currently at the Mudac in Lausanne in the Mastering design show.
Anton Alvarez’s work is concerned with systems, processes and the development of tools to create objects. Empolying his self-built ‘Thread wrapping Machine’ he binds components solely with glue coated threads.
This process allows to incrementally add components to shape objects while making the wrapping process visible through the coloured threads.

With « Light Chair Metamorphosis », 2013 (serie of two unique pieces), Anton Alvarez has responded to the typical character of the Stabelle – often consisting of an individually crafted backrest – by integrating his personal design approach in the same place. His interpretation of the Stabelle chair has become a source of light and reveal an object in metamorphosis.

Claire Anne O’Brien’s approach in interpreting the traditional alpine chair was to capture the Stabelle’s
strong typology in knitting. By taking inspiration from the carved detail found in older alpine chairs and translating this into an intricate knitted patterns she created a juxtaposition of scale, material and surface detail.
with a sculptural approach to textiles, Claire Anne O’Brien explores form, construction and scale through the unique properties of knitted fabrics. Fusing furniture design with a traditional, domestic technique like knitting, Claire-Anne pushes the boundaries of knit and demonstrates a contemporary language of craft.

Originally from Ireland, Claire Anne O’Brien (*1979, Cork) is a textile designer based in East London. After graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2006 with a BA in Textiles, Claire-Anne went on to gain an MA in Constructed Textiles at the Royal College of Art, London in 2010. In 2011 she recieved the Future Makers Award from the Crafts Council of Ireland.