Come Up To My Room 2017, part 1

Come Up To My Room, is a main event during the Toronto Design Offsite Festival. Located in the Gladstone Hotel, on the Queen West West strip of Toronto, this is the alternative event to the much popular Interior Design Show.

Taking up the second and third floor of the hotel, artists transform the rooms into an imaginative landscape of political, immersive and fun explorations into what art and design can provoke. This year’s theme Transplant looks at our relationship with the world and with those around us that is informed and affected by geopolitics, media, and our digital social interactions. Ideas, knowledge, and culture filtered are expressed through these exchanges evolve once transmitted and transferred from one place and to another. Through this act of transplantation, art, media, and culture converge, diverge, and reemerge into new and unique collective entities, which is what presented throughout the hotel. Continue reading “Come Up To My Room 2017, part 1”

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PNEU | a spatial experience

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Set within the historic Church of Holy Trinity in the heart of Trinity Square and steps from the Eaton Centre, the opening party of the Toronto Design Offsite Festival launched. The main feature of the event is an installation from Design Fabrication Zone (DFZ), Ryerson University’s interdisciplinary incubator for design and fabrication. This is the description of the installation provided by the designers: Continue reading “PNEU | a spatial experience”

Harrods Cafe by DRS

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The 160 m2 sandwich cafe takes inspiration from classical London club interiors using hues such as deep green, dark blue and rich burgundy. The brand new sandwich bar has been refashioned as an unusually chic and comfortable bolthole to complement the acres of retail within the world renowned department store.

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Tom Dixon Sandwich is furnished with the latest innovations in brass lighting and deeply upholstered club chairs, marble clad tables and pierced metal screens, all from the Tom Dixon collection and some previously unseen. The result is a gastronomic oasis literally sandwiched between the two Tom Dixon furniture concessions on the third floor.

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Chipinque Residence by Jakob Gomez

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Monterrey is well known for its imposing-scale mountains. Located in Chipinque, part of the Sierra Madre Oriental, this residence by Jakob Gomez, offers unique panoramic views of the valley and the surrounding nature.

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Built in the 70s the building complex was intended to provide affordable housing in the area. With only 61 square meters (~657 sqft) the goal was to update the nearly 40-year old concrete structure by reorganizing the layout and rethinking natural light, materials and finishes.

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The rearrangement of areas (kitchen, living, dining and bedrooms) orbit around a center (yellow) foyer, and mirrors the materials throughout. All finish materials were carefully selected to reflect the characteristic color shades and materials provided by the local limestone and pine wood.

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Going Local in the Junction

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Located at Dundas Street West, just east Keele the DUKE presentation centre, designed by local studio Mason Studio is an authentic reflection of the surrounding neighbourhood. By collaborating with local artists the space celebrates the talent and unique identity of the Junction.
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Like a perfectly choreographed dance, the movement through the space is full of Junction Life moments all crafted by local designers. The entrance features a leather armchair and side table designed by Derek McLeod. The ‘cabinet of curiosities’, constructed by Brothers and Sons is a 15-foot wall unit filled with handmade and curated found objects by Crow design. The window seat, cushions and patio seating provide a layered experience of colour and texture, that were all designed by Fugitive Glue.

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As you walk past the model, and towards the kitchen, subtle furnishings help anchor the space such as the leather reception desk and turquoise island stools by Discreet and Discrete. The upper area features a walnut daybed and an accompanying wall mirror by Heidi Earnshaw. This section allows the visitor the opportunity to relax and enjoy the eclectic arrangement of artwork and videos of the neighbourhood and project. To highlight the informative elements of the space, custom lighting pieces of varying materials were designed by Paul Campbell and Eclectic Revival.

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Careful consideration was also paid to the interior architecture of the presentation centre to act as a backdrop for the bespoke creations. Wall paneling, the use of graphic printed wall tiles, natural stone and subtle variations of wood creates a layered environment of texture and pattern for the diverse mix of furnishings and artwork.

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All of this attention to detail allows the visitor to become immersed in the identity of the neighbourhood and how the condo development relates to it.

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Stressing that the purchasing of a condo is as much about understanding the character of the community as it is about the units themselves.

IIDEX Celebrating Canadian Design

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To me, IIDEX has always been the kick-off to the Canadian design season. As Canada’s National Design and Architecture Expo and Conference, this is the place where designers and architects gather to see the latest in building products, technology and materials. Taking place at the Direct Energy Centre, as most trade shows go, the majority of the hall was dedicated to vendors showcasing industrial flooring, lighting and decorative elements.

But amidst the repetitive maze-like layout of the show floor, there were several installations that allowed visitors to interact and take some time to see what the local-talent is up to.

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Glamping, also know as “glamourous camping”, was an interactive camp-ground/lounge designed by Mason Studio. Cardboard bears and trees set the stage for an environment full of inflatable and tufted furniture. This urban get-a-way fused the great Canadian outdoors with the modern comforts of the great indoors. The installation focused on showcasing the products of other vendors, sparking a conversation about the space and the displayed articles.

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Woodshop was a collaboration between the City of Toronto, IIDEX Canada, and Ideacious.com that brought together 15 innovative wood prototypes that utilized Toronto’s untapped Ash resource. The installation proposed innovative, market-ready commercial and consumer prototypes to reduce the number of ash trees headed for the landfill.

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Using traditional woodworking processes coupled with digital design and CNC fabrication techniques, Impression by Kerr Design created the intricate details carved into a wooden bowl. Tawt (Blanket Box) by urbanproduct re-imagined the traditional Haidi bentwood boxes into a contemporary form. SLASH + BURN, by Fieldhouse, Ford + Reed, was a collection of turned ash pendant lights that used burning as a finishing technique. Fort York by Rob Southcott Studio was a series of storage furniture constructed from salvaged ash pieces collected throughout the York region.

Did you know that Beyonce and Simon Cowell only use coloured toilet paper?

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The World House Renova installation, designed by Luigi Ferrara was an exploration in the use of colour and design. Available in more than 60 countries, the European brand offers colourful designs and new functional solutions through stylish and environmentally safe products for the home and body. Rolls of paper were constructed to create a variety of new meanings such as a tree, flowers and sexy garments.

Overall, the 2013 IIDEX left me feeling inspired knowing that the Canadian design scene is strong with innovative products and ideas that relate to the culture and resources found in our own backyard.

Zaha Hadid that Sh*t

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After seeing the many products that Zaha Hadid has designed for this year’s 2013 Salone del Mobile. A question came to my mind: Can these pieces actually fit in an interior designed by Zaha Hadid?

The following photo essay explores the age old question: What came first, the chicken or the egg? And does form really follow function?

Guangzhou Opera House, 2003-2010 + Serac bench, 2013

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Neil Barrett Shop in Shop, 2013 + Aria and Avia Chandeliers, 2013

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Roca London Gallery, 2009-20011 + Mercuric Tables, 2013

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Glasgow Riverside Museum of Transport, 2004-2011 + Gyre Chair, 2013

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Aura – Villa Malcontenta, 2008 + Crest Bench, 2013

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Is this a Zaha interior? Well, the Swash Cabinet is:)