July 20, 2002
Design & Utopia

Two articles from Metropolis magazine (a mag I've started buying every issue of): The Smart Hands of Hella Jongerius and Utopia Now (about planned communities in India).

When Jongerius went to the factory, the only firm idea she had was that she wanted to "make an upholstery fabric where if you have ten chairs, you don't see a repeat in every chair, so they look related to each other but not the same." She used the upholstery to turn every piece of furniture that will ever be covered in it into a Hella Jongerius. By weaving with different-size swaths and strips of patterns in each warp, she makes it impossible for anyone using the fabric to create a sense of uniformity or perfection. Jongerius has designed in manufactured customization. "The whole point is," she says, kicking off her shoes so she won't damage the bolt of Dot fabric she's just rolled out as she walks over it, "you don't see the repeats, so you have an industrial product that looks like it's been woven specially for you." Murphy explains, "It's a totally revolutionary way to look at textiles, one that really challenges how the furniture industry uses fabrics."

Posted by Bill Stilwell at July 20, 2002 07:17 PM
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