Launch Pad at WantedDesign Manhattan is an annual effort to bring burgeoning design minds into the purview of eager manufacturers.
The event, which occurred at the Javits Center last month, is an invite-only exhibit for the creations of 30 international designers.
Featuring prototypes of furniture, home accessories, and lighting, Launch Pad is "the best place for manufacturers to meet new designers, discover fresh ideas and discuss potential products to develop."
There's an impressive range of output and aesthetic here. Everything from the refined and finely honed joinery of Mo Collection to the artistic ideations of Mana Sazegara.
Sazegara's Playground is an otherworldly assemblage of furniture I'd love to explore. How could you resist a chair that appears to extrude black and white strips of bacon? One could argue this is Tim Burton territory just as well as that of Dr. Seuss. Either way, Playground is a visionary exploration of shape and color that forecasts future innovation from this young designer.
Stash, by Friedlander Furniture, inhabits the other end of the aesthetic spectrum.
Inspired by the iconic form and function of hinged school house desks, Stash imagines an entire suite of furniture that cleverly folds up and away to reveal hidden storage—transforming nearly any surface into a haven for tidying up the environs and getting your stuff out of sight and mind.
Lucy Wang's Plug Unplug Shelfie is another eminently functional piece.
Shelfie works by flipping and rotating around a fixed rectangular piece attached to the wall, thus doing duty as a hanger, small shelf, and general convenient accessory.
Lastly, Studio Lizan Freijsen's Fungal Wall is certainly a sight to behold.
A wall-sized installation at Amsterdam's ARTIS-Micropia museum, Fungal Wall proposes to look at the intricate life of fungi and lichen forms by blowing them up to scale. The tufted-wool installation challenges our perceptions about traditional beauty by proposing a new perspective on these natural forms. This is a formal and textural tour de force that may leave you wanting over-sized lichens growing unchecked throughout your living room.
Launch Pad 2021 welcomed an impressive scope of designers and design. The breadth of artistic vision and exacting craft made for an exciting proposition for future output. The work of the 30 selected designers was reviewed by a jury of renowned industry professionals. Find out more at ICFF/WantedDesign.