This year’s Guest of Honour – the award-winning Chinese design and architecture office Neri&Hu – is creating an installation at Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair that highlights social issues unique to China. The traditional Chinese village, which is disappearing at an alarming rate, is depicted in the installation.
“We wanted to deviate from the furniture fair’s conventional ambitions, which often focus on displaying product design, and instead link the exhibited objects and products to social issues that are unique to China. We recently started looking into the issue of disappearing villages and village culture, an alarming trend that greatly impacts the traditional notion of community, family and cultural roots. Since many of our products revolve around and are inspired by perceptions of nostalgia, the home, the family and the individual’s relationship to others in a collective, we wanted to create an exhibition that represents and captures the essence of the traditional Chinese village,” explain Lyndon Neri and Rossana Hu.
Inspired by the street life in clan-based villages, the exhibition layout is that of a sinuous or continuous alleyway that folds and unfolds to create lanes and layers of spaces slowly revealing themselves to visitors. The shape consists of linked rows that form a village. Dividing walls, ornamental details, windows and shutters created unexpected encounters. The Chinese notion of “fiction” actually derives from the term “small talk” originating from alleys and streets. The spatial device of the alley creates a quirky tableau for the objects while inviting the behaviors of gossip, voyeurism and eavesdropping amongst fair visitors.
Founded in 2004 by partners Lyndon Neri and Rossana Hu, Neri&Hu Design and Research Office is an inter-disciplinary architectural design practice based in Shanghai, China with an additional office in London, UK. Neri&Hu works internationally and is composed of multi-cultural staff who speak over 30 different languages. They believe strongly in research as a design tool, as each project bears its unique set of contextual issues. A critical probing into the specificities of program, site, function, and history is essential to the creation of rigorous design work.
Aside from Architecture and Interiors, Neri&Hu is actively working on a number of design products for various brands in Europe including Agape, Arflex, Artemide, BD Barcelona Design, BOLON, ClassiCon, Concrete LCDA, Driade, Fritz Hansen, Gandia Blasco, GAN, Kvadrat, LEMA, Meritalia, MOOOI, Nanimarquina, OFFECCT, Parachilna, Poltrona Frau, Porro, S.Pellegrino, Wallpaper* Handmade, Viabizzuno,and brands in Asia, including JIA and Stellar Works, among many others. Lyndon Neri and Rossana Hu have received a large number of awards.
Listen to Neri&Hus´s lecture at the Stockholm Design & Architecture Talks at Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair 2017 »