Huib Muilwijk is the designer behind Made By Midas furniture based in Breda, the Netherlands. Made By Midas creates bold pieces that are both funky and functional, like the combination chair and bookshelf and the crib that can be set up at two different heights. Muilwijk’s latest release is a couch with an air of the surreal. We wondered if the couch called Ceci n'est pas une croix, c'est un banc was inspired in name by Magritte’s series of paintings Ceci n’est pas une pipe or whether there was more of a religious element to it.
What is the meaning behind "Ceci n'est pas une croix, c'est un banc"?
Many shapes have many meanings. Through time they’ve been burdened by meaning and symbolism, by people and by function. For many – but not to me - my design may make a reference to Christianity. But if you ask me, I designed a couch, not a crucifix. This happens to be the ideal shape for a couch; the sitter may sit on it in many ways. I have taken the shape out of context, freed it from burden and made it an ordinary household object.
The couch is covered in soft felt and consists of four separate elements which may be configured differently. Myriad compositions are possible and new elements will be added over time.
The world is already full of 'stuff' – as a designer, why do you choose to create more?
The world is full of people, though we keep making new ones. Because it's in our nature and it is fun to do. It's the same with me and design, it's nature's calling and fun to do.
'Ceci n'est pas une crois, c'est une banc' will be presented at 'HolyTac' during the Dutch Design Week 2007.