This Furniture Collection Elevates Brick From A Humble Building Material To A Work Of Art

Concrete, marble, glass, wood: these materials are commonly used inside and out, as building materials, but now also for furniture and household decor. Brick, on the other hand, does not quite have that same cross-over appeal—though a new collection from design studios Vonnegut/Kraft and Kneip might change that.

The collaboration is part of the Norway x New York initiative that showed last week at the Sight Unseen OFFSITE portion of New York Design week. The cross-cultural exchange—now in its second year—pairs design studios from New York (Vonnegut Kraft) and Norway (Kneip) to work together on a piece. For these two studios, their common ground was an interest in reappropriating a material from its most common use. They settled on bricks—a ubiquitous feature in both of their home cities.

Vonnegut Kraft and Kneip collaboration for the Sight Unseen Off 2017 ‘Norway x New York’ show. [Photo: The White Arrow]
The result is a beautiful collection of tables and vessels that elevate brick from a common building material to a work of art. The designers—Katrina Vonnegut and Brian Kraft from Vonnegut/Kraft, and Jørgen Platou Willumsen and Stian Korntved Ruud of Kneip—worked with M&B Waterjet in New Jersey to cut the brick. They looked to the effects of weather and erosion to give the furniture in the collection their organic shape and feel. They then topped off the tables with wood tops made in Brooklyn.

Though the collection above is not for sale at this time, the foursome says it wants to continue the series and explore more forms from reappropriated materials. For the time being, though, the collection above gives ample evidence that even bricks can clean up well.MM