Design – The Characters collection of living room furniture by London-based Italian studio SABI by Sabina Blasiotti consists of a family of chairs, a table, a coffee table, a cupboard, a bookshelf, a sofa, mirrors, lamps, picture frames, and vases – all recalling the smooth and bold style of Japanese calligraphy.
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The Characters collection addresses Japanese wood carving craftsmen’s self-expression. “The well-rounded and multifaceted furniture suit a range of environments from private living rooms to retail, office spaces, and hospitality premises.” Sabina Bliasiotti told Archipanic. “Each ‘character’ is intended to stand alone, as well as to be combined with other collections’ pieces to create larger spatial compositions.”
According to Japanese manufacturing techniques, each piece is crafted from carved and charred cedar wood, except for the lamps and the mirror, which include additional metals for the movable lamps’ heads and the mirror finish.
To obtain the typical pitch-black ink look, the furniture pieces come in sculpted cedar wood burnt on the surface to obtain a superficial layer of carbon that allows for more sustainable timber preservation.
“I’ve always been fascinated by Japanese calligraphy as an exhibition of the calligrapher at a moment of time producing artistic pieces that look alive. Likewise, I conceived the Characters collection as a personal expression at a moment in time, with each piece of furniture designed after a unique series of quick sketches that haven’t been further edited or corrected.”
“With this method in mind, I wanted the furniture to showcase personality, as well as imperfections, and to bring life and expression inside living spaces. As a result, Characters seem to have their own conscious life. They keep changing and revealing ineffable silhouettes as you move and rotate around them, and they are unpredictable as they play with light and shadows through the days and through the seasons.”
SABI is a trans-disciplinary architectural and design studio based in London and working internationally. “We relate to aesthetics, rust, and the physical embodiment of time. At our studio, we care deeply about the message that projects or products physically carry.”
All images are by studio SABI.