"Homeless furniture": when design goes nomad

by Serena L. Rosato
8 Love 11661 Visits

DESIGN_ Nowadays the word "furniture" doesn’t have the same meaning as it did in the past. What has changed?

Let's have a look at the definition: "furnitures - the movable articles that are used to make a room or building suitable for living or working in". So, at first glance the meaning is the same ...maybe what has changed is the concept, is the idea of "room - building" turned into the overall idea of "space" as a place with functional and socio-cultural aspects or as place that contains objects and at the same time is defined by objects too.

The design team chmara.rosinke strive to combine craftmanship with a conceptual and ecological approach. Most of their projects are self-initiated and inspired by functional and socio-cultural aspects. Defining space, by the space itself or by placing objects, means influencing the world.

With the project 2,5³ they designed a minimal living cube - intending to revolutionize social canons -  inspired by  the idea of modular and mobile living structures borrowed from  architects and designers of 60´s and 70´s. 

2,5³ - everything cube from chmara.rosinke on Vimeo.

"Since our studies we were fascinated by minimal living spaces and minimal forms of housing. Besides that this project was lead by our fascination for special, complex and specific forms or even archetypes of furniture with varying scales. We designed this 2,5mx2,5mx2,5m intimate, nomadic living space as an reinterpretaion of the "living cube“ of Papanek & Hennessey. The main difference to the original concept from the 70´s is that Papanek and Hennessey designed several cubes for particular functions, like a relaxation or a working cube. In our concept the spacial idea that has dramatically changed by the use of notebooks, smart-phones and the web, play an important role. To shorten this, we just need less space, as there are less books, less paper, no fax, no television and so on.

Another important aspect in our project is the cult of less movement. People that are counting their belongings and try to get under 500 and later under 100. Belongings seem to develop in metropolitan and contemporary culture to a form of balast and not anymore a way of showing wealth, status and success in live. We want to move, to travel, to take new jobs, be more independant. So we have also to minimize our belongings and habits. Out of this we have designed the multifunctional cube, it consists of a desk, that can be changed to a kitchen, a rolling cupboard, that can be unfolded to an eating table for two persons, a bed, a big cupboard for clothes, a mirror… a drawer. A special chair is designed for the height of the kitchen /desk and by folding them you can climb on top of the cube to have a different view and read a book. The whole cube can be closed with textiles to protect ones intimate space. The nomadic
structure can be installed in about one hour."

With an other interesting project called Mobile hospitality, they focused attention on self-initiative in public space: responsibility for the outdoor space  stops at the garden fence for most residents, the project starts just here.

mobile Gastfreundschaft - der Film from chmara.rosinke on Vimeo.

Based on the concept of mobile hospitality they were also commissioned to design a pop-up fashion presentation tool, COS pop-up store : funtions, colors and the aesthetical approach were adapted to the needs of the fashion brand.

Danish designer Rasmus B.Fex also takes part in this vision of "homeless furniture" by creating the reversible desk Bed & Study, a piece of furniture that can both become a desk or a bed in a pinch. 

About his work he says: "Most of us have as students tried to be homeless. If you did not have a place to sleep, you might have slept on a couch with a friend. I know how it can interfere with the studio not having a place to stay. You need a place where you can be yourself and concentrate. My mission is to create debate about lack of housing for students. It should lead to increased attention and open up possible solutions. Help students - speak up!"

This year during the Salone Satellite 2013 in Milan, the Swiss design team BERNHARD | BURKARD presented a very attractive and simple chair, curt. This desk chair, in combination with the environment,serves its purpose as a desk chair. To achive best stability, it needs to be leaned against walls or rails in a flat angle. The anti-slip coated stand provides safe grip on every surface. Even though it looks dangerous it provides comfort seating and relaxing in every occasion. 



^  First picture - Sack und pack by  chmara.rosinke


    • Serena L. Rosato

      Serena L. Rosato


      Bari / Italy

      Architetto per vocazione, web writer per diletto. Progetta spazi e costruisce idee giocando con pixel e inchiostro, occhi curiosi e delicata ironia. Attenta ai dettagli e distratta dalle novità, costantemente alla ricerca della bellezza delle cose. Dichiarata dipendenza da viaggi, musei e scarpe. ____________________________________________________________ Architect by vocation , web writer for pleasure. She designs and builds spaces ideas playing with ink and pixels, curious eyes and de)

    2,5³ 19


    Austria / 2013

    Mobile hospitality 12

    Mobile hospitality

    Austria / 2011

    COS pop-up store 10

    COS pop-up store

    Austria / 2013

    curt | desk chair 23

    curt | desk chair


    Sack und pack 4

    Sack und pack

    Austria / 2012