APPARENTLY IMPERFECT: APPARATUS





“It’s about trying to find the perfect imperfect”



Three. This time, three degrees of separation stood between
A-Gent of Style and today’s topic. A fortnight ago at Decorex 2013, his friend
 Tim Walters from George Spencer Designs introduced him, sadly too briefly, to Zak Profera of the design brand ZAK+FOX they now represent in London.




woof woof

ZAK+FOX, #woofwoof



A-Gent of Style had seen ZAK+FOX fabric collection recently in publications but it is only when he did his homework online a few days later that he came across this photograph. 

Shinji aka Fox with Strada Study fabric and Triad 3 ceiling light from ZAK+FOX and Apparatus


A-Gent of Style immediately recognised the brilliant photograph he had seen circulating on the blogosphere of a ‘fox’ sitting on a Beni Ourain rug in front of a striking greyish background that resembles a cross-section between a piece of marble or wood. What was very catchy and memorable about this photo was not only the dramatic foil but also the posture of the cute ‘FOX’ (Profera’s dog called Shinji) sitting attentively upright on his hindquarters and staring upwards, transfixed not by a juicy bone but by a…lighting fixture. Genius.



Which finally brings us to Apparatus, the brilliant New York lighting fixtures company for whom A-Gent of Style fell head over heels.



Gabriel Hendifar
and Jeremy Anderson are the two founders and designers of this studio based in New York who create beautifully handcrafted lighting pieces. Apparatus was born after the couple realised they couldn’t find the utilitarian yet elegant lights they were looking for. “We were looking for something that spoke to the dichotomy between complexity and utility. There is something oddly complex about our fixtures, but ultimately I think the pieces achieve their function in quite a utilitarian way”.




The creative duo – Hendifar’s background is in fashion and Anderson’s is in public relations – create unique pieces that are either made of vintage and salvaged components as well as pieces from contemporary materials. They work with artisans to develop metal, glass, wood and even porcelain components but ultimately assemble every piece individually by hand. Finishes come in aged, silvered or blackened brass or oil rubbed bronze and give the objects an incredible patina that look time-worn  and definitely not like a machine-made product from a production line. Some of their fixtures like the Highwire and Arrow make use of calfskin or even python-patterned leather. 


Their creations are undeniably influenced by 20th C design (they credit the kinetic sculptures of Arthur Ganson as one of their inspiration as well as the aerialist Philippe Petit’s high wire exploits) but look thoroughly modern (especially with the Edison exposed filament clear bulbs). They have a distinct industrial, masculine look that contradictorily is not devoid of charm, character and charisma. Far from it. Despite being static, the mechanical and architectural aspects of the lights allow them to follow a trajectory or float in the case of the Clouds. The various permutations of the designs can be geometric and balanced but also irregular and asymmetrical depending on the segments and pivots of the armatures. The end result is arresting, playful and beautiful. They certainly tick all of A-Gent of Style‘s boxes when it comes to lighting fixtures just like Gareth Devonald Smith‘s pieces or Bert Frank‘s.




Their first collection displayed modern and geometric shapes with aged materials like the reclaimed wood from derelict water tanks of the Column Lamps or the Cloud chandelier with its frosted glass orbs and two-toned chains.
Pieces from their second collection include chandeliers, sconces and an inaugural fabric collaboration with ZAK+FOX, such as the grey Strada Study linen on the photograph with FOX, now also available as a wallpaper.


Apparatus
‘s creations are show-stoppers and the perfect strucural element to decorate and enhance any neutral room. Some of their pieces, like the Cloud or the Synapse inspired by the mechanics of neural synapses and composed of two hand-moulded glass domes, already look like vintage, sought-after pieces.

Buddies

Lariat

Lariat



 

Cloud

 

Some of the finishes

 

Arrow

Arrow

 

Gabriel Hendifar

 

Highwire

 

Twig 5








Twig 1

Twig 1

 

Twig 5

Twig 5

 

Column Lamps

Column Lamps

 





Jeremy Anderson

 

Synapse

Synapse

















 

Triad 15

Triad & Dyad 15

 

Triad 9

Triad 9

 

Triad 3

 

Dyad sconce

 

Compass









The talented pair has another string to their creative bow and offers interior design services. Here are some examples of their elegant, urbanite projects that you might recognise from recent publications.


















And in case you haven’t been illuminated enough by Apparatus, there’s of course Instagram (apparatusstudio) and for now a short video of one of their projects, Buddies :




http://vimeo.com/66180994



– Photos by Apparatus, ZAK+FOX and A-Gent of Style

 

 

 

 

THE AUTUMN DECORATIVE FAIR 2013





So you thought it was over? That there couldn’t possibly be another design fair in London this autumn? How wrong can one be!




The Decorative Fair is a thrice-yearly specialist event for the discerning decorator looking to source unusual English and European antiques, original 20th century designs and works of art from all periods to the present day. From opulent show-stoppers to useful furniture, around 140 exhibitors offer a broad range of both fine quality and affordable pieces for inspired interiors, in the relaxed surroundings of leafy Battersea Park. The Fair is fun, fashionable and particularly well-known as an excellent source of painted furniture, Gustavian & Swedish design, 20th century design, lighting, accessories and named-design furniture, and excellent mirrors. Its worldwide reputation, established over 25 years, entices international trade and retail buyers, interior designers, and private customers seeking unique and unusual furnishings and quirky accessories for decorating schemes.


Alidad – Talk & Book-Signing 2nd October

 


If you missed his talk during Focus/13, the award-winning interior designer Alidad will be giving a free talk ‘Decorating with Antiques & Antique Textiles’ on Wednesday 2nd October from 6-6.30pm, followed by a pre-publication book signing of his new tome Alidad: The Timeless Home. Seats are limited and must be booked in advance by emailing the Press Office on pr@pipparoberts.com.




LAPADA 2013



 



Today is the last day for Decorex International 2013 and Focus/13 but it’s LAPADA‘s turn to now take up the design baton in the capital. The largest association or professional dealers in the UK will be staging from today its annual major London fair in Berkeley Square. Roll on!

 





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