Rem Koolhaas creates futuristic furniture for Knoll
12-strong line featuring plexiglass swivel armchairs debuts at Salone del Mobile in April
Somewhat in the shadows of its mother ship is the little-known but fascinating think-tank AMO. For this is an off-shoot of Rem Koolhaas’s OMA. AMO mostly puts its talents into innovative catwalk shows for the likes of Prada and Miu Miu.
And OMA chose the latest Prada fashion extravaganza to debut its new range of furniture for Knoll. This season’s Prada A/W menswear show was styled as a domestic setting, perfect as a venue for a sneak preview. AMO has designed Prada's catwalk shows since 2004. The 12-piece collection - currently a work in progress - will get its proper launch at this spring’s Salone del Mobile, tying in with Knoll’s 75th anniversary.
But this was no cosy suburban set-up. AMO had pushed the boat out to imagine a futuristic house, the show’s theme being ‘ideal home’ (though it was a far cry from London’s rather safe and Ideal Home Show!) The set was furnished with some eye catching examples of seating from the OMA collection.
Outsized swivel chairs are clad in extremely knobbly blue, pink or white foam and sit on square mirrored bases, while the oval and rectangular coffee tables are in Plexiglas and stacked wood.
The pieces may be headline-grabbing, but they’re unlikely to be big sellers for Knoll. However, that’s not what such a collaboration is about. The intention, surely, is for some of that Koolhaas magic to rub off on the furniture company. Koolhaas, of course, was confirmed earlier this month as the director of the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale. You can see more of his work in The Phaidon Atlas 21st Century World Architecture and 20th Century World Architecture.