Özalbayrak’s Stackable Steckbar

Furniture with a dual purpose make sense. The idea that pieces should also serve as room dividers is so obviously practical that it should have been popularized long ago. Any Janus-headed module deserves praise, but a new project by Ismail Özalbayrak goes beyond the double duty. Steckbar has another unexpected benefit: it gets assembled without tools simply by using a stacking system.

Steckbar. Designed by Ismail Özalbayrak.

Not content with only two benefits, German design student Özalbayrak offers three (I surmise he was the kid in class who always did his Extra Credit work). Currently studying at the Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg, Özalbayrak may live in a big open space (or a little open space)–the kind of place that cries out for definition. In striving to carve out his own space, Özalbayrak came up with this diverse design.




Steckbar is made of bended, welded and powder-coated steel plates. In bright colors, the bookshelf/room divider/sideboard commands attention while it slices up a flat. Stack up to four of these Steckbars, using a monochromatic scheme for a unified look or a variegated scheme for a playful look. The zig-zag shape seems to defy gravity, and the slanted side pieces also give Steckbar a more complex profile than most modular multi-functional pieces. The open top and closed bottom is another touch that breaks the traditional right angles reserved for bookshelves (and shelves in general). The end result of Steckbar is something slightly off balance, something a little askew. I like the irregularity; it echoes the multi-faceted aspect of Özalbayrak’s design.

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