Workshopped 2015


The Fizz selects standout talent from Workshopped ’15, Sydney’s inspiring showcase of new designers


One of Australia’s longest running design exhibitions, Workshopped is now in its fifteenth year, and is an influential platform for supporting developing designers. It has shared the work of more than 350 designers over the years, including Viktor Legin, whose slim, steam-bent timber LED ‘Balance’ pendant light won third place at 2015’s Milan’s SaloneSatellite Awards.

A showcase for young and emerging Australian talent, Workshopped ’15 Sydney brought together prototype furniture, accessories and lighting (including Adam Cruickshank’s double-hooped LED ‘Ovalite’ pendant, above) from a brace of new names, curated over two floors at interiors store hub Supa Centa Moore Park. There’s still time tomorrow to catch the show, which features more than 50 industrial and product designers responding to the theme of ‘Design in Architecture’. Alternatively, check out our selection of up-and-coming names below…

Top tables
The small ‘Spade’ side table by Simon Colabufalo offers a serious hit of glossy red, combining oak and clean-lined aluminium, colour-matched with custom-turned bolts. Caren Elliss’s ‘T12’ side table celebrates underappreciated terrazzo, usually seen on flooring, but here a focal point on the table top, offering texture and unique pattern with every piece. Marble’s still on trend for furniture, and Elliss feels Cinderella material terrazzo deserves its hour in the sun. Laser-sintering is explored to futuristic, arty effect in the ‘Evolve’ side table, a collaboration by Michael Shepard and Adam Cruickshank. We like its skinny, see-through form and two-tone black and white base.

Stylish seats and storage
Ben Baker’s ‘Apeiron’ origami-esque stool can stand alone but used in multiples it creates a playful geometry. This shapely little number was inspired by sheet metal and tessellation, and is all about flexible function. Baker’s ash-topped ‘Flow’ bench is supported by a continuous loop of hand-bent steel, a sculptural metal spiral that can be powder-coated in a range of colours. It was originally designed using recycled materials from a skip. Bradley Saywell’s sexy ‘SSCT’ (Saywell Storage Coffee Table) caught our eye, with a sturdy yet lightweight steel skin and solid timber table top. A removable textile liner keeps your treasures in good nick. 

Poised pendant lights
Pairing porcelain edged with hand-woven rush grass, the minimal ‘Tao’ pendant lamps by Helen Chen draw on an almost 300-year-old technique and are made by Taiwanese artisans, yet look completely contemporary. Also riffing on nature, Sebastian Damm’s ‘Alga V2 (Beta)’ pendant was inspired by the molecular structure and bioluminescence of algae. A laser-cut shell is layered over an internal diffuser in amber or purple blown glass. Concrete, steel and copper – three key architectural materials – form the sculptural ‘Saddle’ pendant lights by Seaton Mckeon, which team bold form and texture. By contrast, the handcrafted ‘Lattu’ light by Farzin Adenwalla is inspired by Indian children’s vibrant spinning tops, combining a colourful metal frame with a hand-turned teakwood holder. Crafted by local artisans, each jaunty piece is a one-off, available in plated copper/brass and a choice of yellow, red, blue, cream, black, turquoise or lilac.

Accessories with attitude
It’s time for a new-look wall clock, and the ‘Orbit’ by Dorte Bell and Ian Johnson is happy to oblige. The front face forms the minute hand and the passing hours are marked by a chrome sphere orbiting the face. Appearing to float from the wall, its pure, abstract simplicity is influenced by modern architecture and the way the moon orbits the earth and earth goes round the sun. A design store should snap this up in no time! Inspired by nature, Helen Chen’s ‘Forest of Mirrors’ look like little round trees, and reflect and maximise the light in an interior space. They’re made from glass and marble in three sizes. Taking their cue from seductive Venice, Patty Hava’s ‘Invisible Cities’ candleholders have an elegant architectural feel, with precision-cut marble bases and an upper section in hand-cast, polished bronze. Ideal for canapés, the small ‘Chataku’ ceramic plates by Fukutoshi Ueno and Kenji Uranishi were inspired by traditional Japanese saucers. Crafted from Arita porcelain, their pretty, graphic patterns represent the seasons.

Workshopped ’15 is open daily, 9am -5pm, until Sunday 23 August 2015 at Supa Centa Moore Park, corner of South Dowling Street and Todman and Dacey Avenues, Kensington, Sydney