Last month marked the return of Singapore Design Week, one of the first Asian fairs to resume following the global pandemic. (Signs of the continent’s ongoing recovery are still noticeable: Major events like Design Shanghai and Design China Beijing are postponed until 2023.) Some 200 design brands emerged to share their latest works and thought leadership through design fairs, satellite events, and seminars throughout the sovereign island country.
Asia’s largest furniture fair, Find–Design Fair Asia was an anchor of Singapore Design Week, with highlights including the dedicated showcase “Emerge @ Find,” which presented the works of up-and-coming Southeast Asian designers in the theme of “materiality.” Among the city’s satellite events, the impressionable “N*thing is Possible” exhibition, hosted by hospitality group Potato Head and OMA, retold the firm’s journey to zero waste with help from works by Toogood, Andreu Carulla, and Max Lamb at Singapore’s National Design Centre.
From a cushion inspired by a rice dumpling to cubic seating fashioned out of ever-so-slender acrylic panels, here are seven cool design debuts that we can’t stop thinking about from Singapore Design Week.
Ketupat pouf by Aureole
In Malaysia, home to Aureole founder Tan Wei Ming, ketupat is a rice dumpling known for its palm-leaf-wrapped exterior. The designer’s newly unveiled Ketupat pouf is formed in a similar fashion, with handwoven rattan taking the place of palm leaf. The piece is produced in collaboration with Tanoti, an organization which provides work opportunities for traditional craft artisans in the remote state of Sarawak, Malaysia.
Fossil chair by Studio Act of Kindness
How does opal crystalize? Charif Lona, founder and design director of Bangkok-based Studio Act of Kindness, pondered this as he conceived Fossil, a merger of reflective stainless steel and translucent resin that recalls opal or precious stone. “The creation of each piece replicates how the gemstone is formed to its finest shape, filling up spaces and later unveiling its preciousness as the fossils dissolved,” Lona tells AD PRO. In addition to the chair, the Fossil collection also includes a side table and cabinet.