Heimtextil Blog

Relax and Swing

The “Young Contract Creations Award 2012: Upholstery” is going to Prague in 2012, as Magdaléna Vojteková from the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design won over the jury with her piece of furniture called “Relax and Swing”. Messe Frankfurt held this contest for outstanding work by young designers in cooperation with trade publisher Matthias Ritthammer, Trevira and ERPO Möbelwerk. The award is worth in total 5.000 Euros and was presented on 12 January 2012. The international trade fair for home and contract textiles will be playing host to the global home textile industry in Frankfurt through 14 January 2012. The best 25 designs were selected in the run-up to Heimtextil in Hall 4.2.


Under the motto “Relax!”, aspiring product, furniture and textile designers were invited to create multifunctional upholstered furniture for the contract business. More specifically, they were called on to create furniture models that invite their users to sit or lie down while also offering additional functions. “This contest, which has been held for the fifth time at Heimtextil 2012, has given rise to some fantastic work, and in recent years it has become a real highlight in the fair’s young design segment,” stated Ulrike Wechsung, Director of Heimtextil, during the award ceremony. Some 60 designs were submitted from 13 international universities.


Customisable textile surface stands out

According to the jury whose five members are drawn from the fields of furniture, design and architecture: “The ‘Relax and Swing’ design embodies the freedom of sitting and lying down.” Thanks to its integrated hooks, this item can be hung up for a dynamic relaxation and swinging experience. It is extremely well suited for modern spas and lobbies. Its shape, the choreography of its seams and its texture are also masterpieces in and of themselves. This furniture has been fashioned from two intersecting loops, and boasts a textile surface that can be individually customised. Loop openings offering storage space are another practical feature of this very outstanding piece of work.


Second prize was won by Fances Frühauf from the Coburg University of Applied Sciences in Germany for “Ease”. This model is organically shaped and flexible, and can be expanded or made smaller in a variety of ways. Its various surfaces are in keeping with the zeitgeist, yet are well equipped for the demands of the future. With its additional docking station for a mobile phone, laptop etc., it allows its users to escape the daily grind and enjoy greater comfort while in a public space.


Iveta Havelková from the Univerzita Hradec Králové in the Czech Republic took third prize for her model “Span”. The jury sees “Span” as a communicative item of furniture for two – especially for couples. This furniture practically invites you to rock back and forth, but can also be set to remain still. Arranged in a semicircle with a total of twelve cushions, “Span” is ideal for use in spas. The experts were also impressed by the four pockets provided for the storage of utensils.


Fourth prize was awarded to Jana Krcmárová from the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Slovakia for the design entitled “Contentment”. Its innovative textile surface is particularly impressive, while the seat base is secondary, and replaceable. The designer has chosen the perfect fabric, focusing on a sensual texture that shapes the character of this piece of furniture: it is invigorating, textile, artistic and unique.


Fifth prize went to Joanna Podkowa from the Strzeminski Academy of Fine Art and Design in Lodz, Poland, for her design called “Millipede” – an entirely different type of furniture. It offers a range of possibilities for sitting or playing for the entire family, in hotels or at home. Sitting, lying down or simply lounging about – anything is possible. Thanks to its flexible elements, the seat depth can also be adjusted. This furniture is fun.

Stefan Jakob

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