group statement Sit, recline, dine, stack, store and hold: furniture for life by the graduating students of the Bachelor of Environmental Design Furniture at UTAS Launceston. Launceston has long been regarded as a centre of design excellence and in particular, a centre of distinction for furniture design. Its reputation has lured this diverse group of students from all over Australia to pursue their passion for furniture. SAMPLE represents the culmination of 3 years dedication to the acquisition of knowledge and skills and to the development of their individual design identities. With a spirit of camaraderie, these designers have worked towards the common goal of developing and producing innovative and original production ready furniture pieces.
content Catalogue Essay: The Challenges and Opportunities of Furniture Design in Australia Adam Goodrum
Message from the Program Director Simon Ancher
Exhibitors Jamie Dobbs
Dmitry Troyanovsky Mark Eaton, Samuel Roberts
Jamie Dobbs, Josh Sinclair, Matt Pearson
â€˜The opportunities and challenges of Furniture Design in Australiaâ€™ Adam Goodrum We are disconnected from the world. Our buying market is tiny and the size of the design community, interested in creating unique and interesting work, reflects how tiny this domestic market is. Ok, that is the depressing side of the equation. The positive side is that Australia has a unique experience to communicate through design. Australia has experienced 22 years of economic growth and with that sustained growth has emerged a new confidence in supporting the locally made. This has influenced an explosion of boutique designer makers establishing themselves. Designers and manufacturers have a closer more intimate relationship offering consumers advantages such as customisation and faster lead times.
The Australian lifestyle is the envy of our near neighbours in Asia. If we design for our own personal hospitality and domestic experiences then this too will be desired by Asian tourists and their domestic markets. Consumers appreciate objects that carry a narrative or story from their place of origin. Tasmania has recently proven that it can be at the cutting edge of Australian cultural and design life. MONA has had a knock-on effect of elevating all the other good work coming out of Tasmania. Australia has not been good at creating regional cities that focus on cultural tourism, something that is common in Europe and America, but MONA has certainly done this for Tasmania. It can only assist in communicating the persistently strong work coming out of the craft and artisan sectors of the island.
Australia is not an exporter of design trends we are mainly an importer of them; from Northern and Central Europe, from America and Japan the waves of design trends have hit our shores for over 200 years. But as designers we can fuse these historically informed traditions with our particular Australian relationship to the environment and our unique culture.
Critical to the ongoing success of this sector is engaging in intelligent far reaching collaboration. Italian manufacturing is about keeping the making at home but inviting great talent from abroad. Doing so brings new thinking and ideas into the heart of a practice and a culture. Sometimes the aliens have to land for new experiences to be had and Italian manufacturing understands this well.
Our Australian design experience is in the far more rudimentary forms of Colonial pioneer culture, the make-do culture that also bleeds into our sporting and social lives as hard working and unpretentious.
The demand for cheap mass-produced furniture will never go away. It has been with us for over 150 years now and it is and will remain the mainstream of what is made and consumed.
However, running in parallel with this dominant industry is an artisanal class and their faithful followers. The sustainability movement is feeding into the size of this demographic of people who want to buy things for life, they want to own things that are durable and are beautiful. This is where we can prosper.
About Adam Goodrum
Adam Goodrum grew up in Western Australia then moved to Sydney to study Industrial Design. Since graduating he has received many accolades including the ‘Young Designer of the Year’ and the prestigious ‘Bombay Sapphire Design Award’. In 2007 he was selected as one of the most influential Australians in the Bulletin Magazine “Smart 100” - Design and Architecture. Focusing on furniture, product and interior design his work unifies functionality with aesthetic. Central to much of Adam’s work is his fascination for movement, geometry and bold colour.
Stitch Chair for Capellini by Adam Goodrum
His practise combines self-initiated work with an impressive list of clients including such companies as Cappellini, Normann Copenhagen and Tait. Adam’s Stitch Chair was selected as one of the best designs of 2008 by the London Design Museum and the “Best 50 Designs of the Last Decade” by Glam DIZAJN. Adam is also a founding member of Broached Commissions. Adam’s work has been published and showcased throughout the world and is collected by Museums. 7
Message from the Program Director - Furniture Simon Ancher
Over the last few years I have witnessed a significant shift in the aspirations and desires of the students coming through this degree program. Previously there was a desire to be innovative and fresh, as this was believed to be the way forward. In reality the pressure to be ‘innovative’ was often too great and the design development process often failed resulting in work that was neither fresh nor innovative. In any particular project the initial focus for the design intent was generally self-oriented, inward thinking and highly personal, a formula that doesn’t typically breed success. A shift in approach and thinking has evolved through the collaboration and engagement with other design programs such as Architecture, Interiors and Landscape. By sitting in common lectures for all programs addressing design history, design communication and theory students have been exposed to the big picture, new ideas, trends, movements and progressive thought processes being exercised by the design profession’s leading practitioners and thinkers.
Through these shared experiences the notion of ‘end user’ was introduced. Students widely discussed and analysed the ‘who’ might be using these products, the ‘why’ behind the decision to actually embark on designing a product and finally the ‘how’ one could design them so as to enhance the ‘end user’ experience. Thinking about the needs and desires of others has brought about a shift in the initial designing phases. The evolving methodology of engaged questioning, analysing, reflecting, prototyping and testing before committing to manufacturing a ‘final’ design object has given depth and new meaning to the student’s design processes. This shift is inline with design best practice and is encouraging to see it flourishing throughout the program. In Adam Goodrum’s catalogue essay ‘The opportunities and challenges of Furniture Design in Australia’ he highlights the notion that “Consumers appreciate objects that carry a narrative or story from their place of origin” a statement that should resonate loud and clear and focus the attention of our new crop of designer makers. As our graduates move into the competitive world of design and try to establish themselves, communicating their stories will be critical to their success. Websites, Blogs, Instagram, Pintrest, Twitter, Facebook etc. The social media bonanza is there to be carefully exploited.
In developing an online profile it vital to remain consistent, respectful of others and keep up to date. The challenge is to keep people informed of your projects, maintain an interesting dialogue with the design community and get involved. Developing a healthy work ethic and balance across both areas of product design/manufacture and communication will ensure a solid foundation is laid for a successful career in Furniture Design and beyond. I look forward to watching your careers blossom.
Simon Ancher Program Director Furniture Design School of Architecture and Design
Jamie Dobbs is a designer and student. He is motivated by both the simple and complex joys of design creation and build, collaboration with artisans and manufacturers and the idea of forming objects that either challenge or add to the existing design dialogue in a positive way. The objects he produces attempt to be functional, beautiful, portable, cost effective, safe and as sustainable as possible.
csaw Desk/Feature Lamp Materials: Blackwood, LED Dimensions: 351L x 180W x 240H CSAW is a table lamp/feature lamp that is novel in that it requires the user to flip the light from one side to the other to operate it - like a see-saw - without a traditional switch. It utilises LEDs for its light source and utilises battery power. Main material is sustainably harvested Blackwood. Finished in carnauba and bees wax. Glues are PVA.
llama and child Bench Seat Materials: Blackwood Dimensions: Large 900L x 320W x 790H Small 675L x 240W x 592H Llama and Child are objects that explore multiple functions and reference the animal in their form. As with Frame, I am exploring reference to nature and the world outside the four walls. Utility and function over maximum comfort. A minimal aesthetic. Main material is sustainably harvested Blackwood. Finished in carnauba and bees wax. Glues are PVA.
nomarda stool Stool Materials: Plywood Dimensions: 450L x 587W x 455H Nomarda is a chair/stool hybrid whose profile has been adopted as my business logo. Small, stocky and strong. Main material is structural plywood. Finished naturally in carnauba and bees wax or painted or scorched. Glues are PVA.
frame Valet Stand Materials: PEFC Plywood, Blackwood Veneer, Wax Finish, PVA glue Dimension: 410L x 360W x 1230H Frame is a piece of bedroom furniture that is designed to be used as a valet stand: a furniture item to throw clothes over before retiring and encompasses a drawer for rings, watches, phone, change or any personal item. Stand attempts to connect to the outside by utilising a counterweight in the form of a natural stone or any weighty object. Material is PEFC Plywood with Blackwood veneer or solid Blackwood. Finished in carnauba and bees wax. Glues are PVA.
[Melody, Harmony, Rhythm] + Form = Furniture. Design inspiration can come from many corners of life. For John Oâ€™Malley it is the world of music that inspires and guides his work. Music has the ability to elicit an emotional response, trigger memories and create mood. It is these qualities that he endeavours to instill in his work. Musical instruments also provide the inspiration for the form of his furniture. From the elegant contours of a guitar body to the wrapped tubing of a French horn his work exhibits soft contours and flowing forms. He aims for an elegant simplicity in his work that belies the complexity of the processes used in their creation.
astrid Lounge Chair Materials: Tas Oak Laminations Dimensions: x 640 x 700 The Astrid chair is a contemporary take on the classic plywood furniture of the 20th century by the likes of Charles and Ray Eames. It is a simple un-upholstered plywood lounge chair finished in Tasmanian Oak. The integrated seat and backrest are generously contoured to accommodate a range of body types, and the form itself is inherently sprung. It is finished with solid Tasmanian Oak back legs.
luthier Desk Light Materials: Blackwood, Celery Top Pine, LED Lighting Strips Dimensions: 220L x 120W x 280H A Luthier is a maker of stringed instruments and the Luthier light borrows the construction techniques of this craft to produce a lightweight, lithe desk or table light. It features an inner [Celery Top Pine] and outer [Blackwood] steam bent shell over a celery top pine skeleton. Replaceable surface mount LED panels provide illumination.
getz turntable Record Player Materials: Plywood,Aluminium Dimensions: 400L x 360W x 175H Taking its name from jazz saxophonist Stan Getz this belt drive turntable is designed to accommodate 2 tonearms providing flexibility of playback. Stylistically it plays on the form [rounded rectangle with centrally located wheel] of the archetypal MP3 player of the more recent past but eschews the associated digital electronics in favour of quality materials and engineering. It is a minimalist stack of CNC cut plywood and aluminium finished with an acrylic platter. Drive is supplied by an outboard motor mounted in a solid aluminium pod.
Josh Sinclair believes in a holistic method of design, where the interconnected elements of not only the design process but the entire experience are considered and designed for a unified outcome. He believes in having an educated insight into people,that this understanding will characterize psychologically engaging and thoughtful objects. Josh is also concerned with design thinking and its relevance beyond the physical object, seeing the design processâ€™s potential application into various other mediums.
dark horse Upright Chairs Materials: Solid Tas Oak and Tas Oak Veneer Laminations Dimensions: 512W x 486D x 805H A quiet personality Dark Horse seeks not to capture the gaze but remain faint, sitting idle has he waits for you to slowly approach. A thoughtful companion he instills an aura of warmth, wrapping comfortably around the body with gentle curves and soft lines he fuses harmoniously within the fabric of time and place. A sincere duality of solid timber and veneer he stands tall yet tranquil, powerful yet soft, a calm demeanour opaquely veiled in a shroud of confidence.
With a background in traditional woodworking methods Mark has studied Furniture Design to further his skills and knowledge in materials and process. His journey has involved experimentation into materials and the development of a greater understanding of methods of work available to him. With a strong belief that furniture and objects should be long lasting and hold emotional value Mark designs with the end user in mind. Quality in design and manufacture are the over arching principles behind Markâ€™s work and complete ownership of that process enables him to pass on fully resolved objects to his clients.
milly stools Stool Range Materials: Tas Oak, Mild Steel Bracket Dimensions: Stool Heights 440, 630, 720 Seat Diameter 360 The Milly range is the result of an investigation into the possibilities of simplifying process. With the aim of developing a simple, repetitive and scalable product Mark has developed a steel bracket that allows the legs and support structure for stools and tables to be removable. This has many benefits such as reducing the cost to the consumer by simplifying the process and enabling flat packing of what are traditionally bulky objects. The range can also be customised by the end user who is able to choose different timbers as well as the colours of the powder coated steel brackets. Stools are available in three heights and are suited to domestic and commercial use.
milly table and bench Table and Bench Materials: Tas Oak, Mild Steel Bracket, Dimensions: Table 1200L x 700W x 720H Bench 850L x 300W x 440H The bracket of the Milly range has been scaled up to a suitable size for tables and benches. The bracket has been modified to allow the addition of rails to support the table and bench tops. Tables and Benches are able to be made to varying sizes allowing a degree of customisation.
Born and raised in Sydney, Matt moved to Launceston, Tasmania to complete a Bachelor of Environmental Design, majoring in Furniture. Matt utilises a hands-on approach in order to gain a greater understanding of the capabilities of technology, the efficiencies in process and the respect of material. Mattâ€™s goal is to obtain a broad range of skills through an investigation of process and material, as well as theoretical analysis. Matt is interested in the small achievements in design that actually solve problems, no matter how small; the idea that the design of everyday objects can enhance a users life. He tries to create objects that become a part of the family home. Objects that are irreplaceable, indispensable and a self-extension of the user because of the enjoyment and the memories that they provide. Matt consciously thinks about the social responsibility that designers have to limit the throwaway nature of furniture and the need to produce high quality items that meet and exceed their expected usage cycles.
wedge Coat Rack Material: Blackwood or American Oak with Powder Coated Steel Dimensions: 310D x 1800H Certain furniture items, such as a coat rack, help us to distinguish between our work life and home life. The act of arriving home and unloading our hat and coat helps us end our workday and begin to feel safe and comfortable in our intimate surroundings. The Wedge stand is based around creating awareness of a physical interaction with an object that is otherwise overlooked. It is getting the user to slow down and to appreciate the way in which we use objects and the bond that it creates. The design has a simple, readable function that is reflected through its form.
r-chair Lounge Chair Material: Blackwood and Leather Upholstery Dimensions: 770W x 770D x 640H The R-Chair looks at reducing the number one cost in production of a furniture item; labour. Each side profile of the chair is created by CNC machining timber boards affixed to a jig. This ensures infinite repeatability, accuracy and is the most efficient process. It looks at creating a 3D form from 2D cut profiles. The timber components are also shaped to give the chair a more three dimensional stance. The front legs, arms and back rails form a continuous ribbon line that hugs the upholstery and the human body just like a loving embrace. The inside edges are softened with a large radius, as this is where the body contacts the frame of the chair. The chair was designed with high-end quality in mind, but most importantly, comfort. It is not centered in a single design style thus allowing it to fit into a wider range of environments. 42
a-table Coffee Table Material: Blackwood Dimensions: 400H x 1000D The A-Table was designed to complement the R-Chair in a lounge-setting environment. It not only shares visual queues with the chair, but also a production methodology. The process for making the table frame is identical to the chair and utilises the same jig. The veneered timber top and legs feature simple detailing in order to embrace the natural beauty of the timber. The table and the chair are the meeting point between hand skills and CNC technology, utilising a traditional joint detail with a more efficient production process.
Having completed a Bachelor of Environmental Design [Furniture] in 2012 at the University of Tasmania, Rhys opted to undertake a further years study in the form of an Honours in Contemporary Arts. Rhys is fortunate enough to have been exposed to a number of materials and processes throughout his time studying, and it is through this hands on approach to learning that has led him to try and establish himself as a designer-maker. Through conducting material investigations, the knowledge gained aids Rhys in the prototyping of objects, and enables him to discover and explore material limitations. The act of learning by making, and learning about a material and process, is what attracts Rhys to pursue this particular avenue.
schmitt Lounge Chair Materials: Tas Oak Lamination, Wool Blend Upholstery Dimensions: 520W x 700D x 770L Starting out as an investigation into timber veneers and the process of timber laminations, Rhys developed Schmitt with the aim of limited batch production. Drawing inspiration from the accuracy and efficiencies of the skateboard industry, Schmitt is produced from locally sourced Tasmanian Oak, using a combination of vacuum forming and male/female pressing techniques. It is the techniques employed in the production of Schmitt that ensure it utilises an efficient use of materials and retains Rhysâ€™s minimalist aesthetic.
blue Sideboard Materials: Tas Oak Dimensions: 1600L x 700H x 500D Blue is a medium sized sideboard intended for limited batch production, serving as a platform to showcase Rhysâ€™s skills as a designer-maker. Starting out as one of a number of investigations into timber laminations, Blue features a laminated front facade treatment, inspired by a shirt collar, which invites users to touch. The sideboard is produced by hand, ensuring a refined end product that typifies Rhys as a designer.
to and fro Kids Rocker Materials: Tas Oak Veneer, Wool Blend Upholstery Dimensions: 700L x 550W x 400H To and Fro applies the fluid form of a ribbon into a solid mass through timber laminations. Comprised of individual components, To and Fro is provided the opportunity to dismantle for ease of shipping. Produced through a culmination of computer aided technologies and free-hand laminating techniques, To and Fro was designed as a one off experiment.
Samuel is most passionate about a design process that enables the initial idea to be explored through a variety of mediums – namely through sketching, modelling, and testing of physical materials. This merging of mediums creates a tactile response and enables him to play with production processes, technologies and techniques. Developing a design sensibility that distinctly emphasises ‘play’: through experimentation, and through many failures, Samuel has been able to expand the possibilities of his designs and rethink material applications and construction capabilities. Samuel’s design process is informed by an aspiration to simplicity and directness in materials: he strives to balance elements of intrigue and playfulness with function and appropriateness. Everyone of these considerations is important to the progression of Samuel’s designs and has helped shape the final pieces you see here today.
tall sticks Coat Rack Materials: Blackwood, Tas Oak, Powder Coated Mild Steel Dimensions: 1700H x 500D Tall Sticks coat rack aims for a minimal tree like stance with tapers and facets giving shape to the individual sticks. The design looks at simple flat pack principals with minimal steel connectors to join the timber pieces together, allowing it to flat pack for ease of transport.
allsorts Pendant Light Materials: Plywood, Acrylic, Blackwood, Chipboard Dimensions: Big 260H x 350D Small 190H x 250D Made from plywood, chipboard and coloured acrylic off cuts, the design of the light was lead by the materials and process rather than the aesthetic or idea. Decisions on hand turning using a lathe against a CNC [computer numerically controlled] milling process were experimented with looking at material attributes alongside efficiencies and consistency. Throughout the process the â€˜hand madeâ€™ plays little part, where the most appropriate method and process has been the use of technology. This then allows for two different treatments to the light, where the outside is round and smooth while the inside is stepped.
Plumb Sideboard Materials: American Oak and Brass Dimensions: 1800L x 750H x 400D Simplicity, proportions and material quality were the focal points of the sideboard. The carcass is American Oak veneer, with solid finger jointed legs and brass door handles. The choice of the handle detail looked at the physical qualities of the material and its ability to change change with time. The design has a strong emphasis on horizontal and vertical lines, with the functions clearly articulated, taking a simple and quiet presence in any room.
The project and brief was centred around the â€˜wasteâ€™ material produced by TA ANN Tasmania and Corinna Timber mills. Logs from these mills can be downgraded due to undesirable colour, shakes or decay in parts of the log. The downgraded timber is then used to make secondary products such as pallets for shipping of the mills more valuable commodities. Each group investigated how the waste sections of rare timber could be upcycled to attract a higher return.
wave bench Bench Seat Materials: Blackwood, Powdercoated Mild Steel Dimenison: 2200L x 600D x 500H Wave Bench was a collaboration between three students: Samuel Roberts, Mark Eaton and Dmitry Troyanovsky. The aim of the project was to design and make a public bench seat, for a commercial setting; using timber offcuts from Tasmanian saw mills. Combining traditional techniques with digital fabrication the design creates an undulating surface with the use of Tasmanian Blackwood slats, which rise and fall, creating ergonomically considered seating patterns. The use of the slats looks at the most efficient use of the timber to prevent waste and allow them to be replaced or recycled at the end of the product life. The Blackwood utilised in this project was originally marked as downgraded shorts and destined to become pallet stock for the mill.
offset Side Table Materials: Blackwood Dimensions: 510L x 445W x 440H Offset was a collaboration between Josh Sinclair, Matt Pearson and Jamie Dobbs. The focus of the project was to utilise salvaged timber, obtained from two sawmills in Tasmania, that was either being burned or under utilised. Each group member put forward a concept that was then selected by an industry representative for further development. The flat pack table concept came together from a brief that called for the efficient use of timber mill offcuts. All timber used in the project was deemed as salvage waste. Blackwood was chosen for its visual presence and a minimal number of fittings were used to give a clean appearance. Processes were kept efficient and a flatpack style of construction was used to keep packaging requirements to a minimum in order to minimise excess energy in its production and distribution. 66
Thanks for inspiring us. Let us return the favour. Thanks for inspiring us. Let us return the favour.
We love your projects... ...your little PAINT projects... ...your big PAINT projects.
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contact Jamie Dobbs email@example.com www.nomarda.com +61 426 212 830
John Oâ€™Malley firstname.lastname@example.org
Josh Sinclair email@example.com www.joshsinclair.com.au +61 431 227 252
Mark Eaton firstname.lastname@example.org www.markeatonstudio.com +61 414 425 894
Matt Pearson email@example.com www.mjpdesignedobjects.com.au +61 432 926 727
Rhys Cooper firstname.lastname@example.org www.rhyscooperdesign.com.au +61 401 203 594
Samuel Roberts email@example.com +61 428 548 449
School of Architecture & Design University of Tasmania Phone:+61 3 6324 4488 fax: +61 3 6324 4477 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.arch.utas.edu.au
We would like to thank and acknowledge our sponsors; Laminex Industries, Inspirations Paint, Tasfab Laser Cutting, McKay Timber, Scott Signs and Foot and Playsted. We would also like to thank Rye Dunsmuir and his entire team from the Design Tasmania Centre, Adam Goodrum for his essay, Simon AncherProgram Director, Matthew Prince-Lecturer and Robin Green-Workshop Manager.
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Date: November 2013 ISBN: 978-1-86295-728-2
Published on Feb 24, 2014
The official catalogue of the Sample Exhibition that was held at the Design Tasmania Centre from the 29th of November 2013 till the 23rd of...