A casual meeting over coffee in Stockholm, discussing, among other things, design and collaboration between designers of the past such as Ettore Sottsass with Shiro Kuramata has led to a new collaborative effort, NICHETTO=NENDO.
Designers Luca Nichetto and Oki Sato have teamed up to create a collection of seven co-designed, co-conceived products. After that fateful first meeting in Stockholm in December of 2012, rather than showing existing work together they decided to make products together to highlight their mutual respect and the affinity between their work.
During the winter holidays, Sato found a creative process for the collaboration in Japanese culture whereby one person composes the first three lines (kami no ku) of a short poem known as a tanka, then sends them to a second person who composes the two final sentences (shimo no ku). Sato sent ideas which Nichetto concluded, and vice versa. All was done in the span of a few days. Both designers accepted each other's work completely.
N=N/05 bridges for islands sofa with Casamania and Innofa
Nendo: "A sofa like an archipelago, divided into small parts rather than one great mass."
Nichetto: "Taking the way that Venice's many islands are connected by narrow bridges as the image, we designed thin legs that seem to float on the water surface and connected the cushions. We also developed side tables in two different shapes."
N=N/06 fish skin on the roof carpet with Ogeborg
Nendo: "A carpet whose form, colour and size can change flexibly thanks to its parts: small overlapping pieces like fish scales or roof tiles."
Nichetto: "You can't make the entire carpet out of individual parts or it will be cumbersome to assemble. We made units out of two, three and four overlapping circles, so that they're relatively easy to assemble and provide colour variation."
N=N/03 paper ice cream lamp with Foscarini and Taniguchi | Aoya Washi
Nichetto: "Ice candies come in different flavours, shapes and colours. What about a lighting fixture that combines the rich variety of ice candies with their beauty when held up to light?"
Nendo: "Carving the ends of 12mm diameter Japanese cypress posts flat like ice candy sticks gave them a slighter impression. Then we needed material for a lampshade to suit the extremely light post, so we developed an original material by dyeing traditional Japanese paper made in an unusual three-dimensional process."
N=N/01 shelves in a comic shelf with Glas Italia
Nendo: "Place many small shelves together to make some of the shelves into bookends, and create tiny and tantalising spaces just waiting for something to be placed on them."
N=N/04 trellis bandaged room divider with Innofa and Vertigo Metals
Nichetto: "Partitions are good for dividing a space, but how about adding extra functional value? The motif: the electrical wiring that keeps a car's rear window from fogging up."
N=N/02 wedge of matter candle holder with Ochiai-Seisakusho and Kadowaki Coating (brass version) and Testi Fratelli (marble version)
Nendo: "Wedge a candle into the fissure in a lump of material, and use it as a candle holder. Because we can change the width of the fissure at will, the holder can accommodate candles of all shapes and sizes."
N=N/07 portable pot (stool) with Discipline
Nichetto: "A stool that's easy to pick up and carry about, thanks to its round form and 'handle' like a pot handle."
Nendo: "Handles on both sides of a pot need to be picked up with two hands, whereas
the handle at the centre of a pot lid allows single-handed use. But a handle at the centre of the seat would make it difficult to sit down, so we created a mechanism for the handle to rise up and down, like the grip on an old-fashioned valise."
The NICHETTO=NENDO exhibition will take place during Milan Design Week 2013, April 9th to14th, at Foro Buonaparte 48, 20121 Milan.