VEER by Aliki van der Kruijs is Wolf-Gordon’s latest collaboration with an emerging designer of impressive conceptual strength and an independent voice. For this commercial upholstery collection, van der Kruijs has explored two- and three-dimensional space through a deceptively simple grid motif, the origins of which started with the designer’s purchase of an antique kimono textile in Arita, Japan. Van der Kruijs first applied the graphic kimono grid to the volumes of porcelain vases, which resulted in distortions of the grid. This process inspired her to apply subtly manipulated grids to the development of Wolf-Gordon’s upholstery textiles, which, in turn, are applied to furniture volumes. It is this dialectic process between 2-D and 3-D that yields new patterning and imparts richness in the collection’s three patterns: FLOAT, TURN and SLIDE.
As in her earlier projects such as “Made by Rain”, currently exhibited in the Cooper Hewitt’s Design Triennial exhibition (5/9/2019-1/20/2020), Van der Kruijs took an academic and methodical approach to the design of VEER. Van der Kruijs is particularly interested in how natural elements and movement can be applied across a range of materials. Following a 2017 ceramics residency in Arita - the “Town of Porcelain” - the designer developed a conceptual framework around the tight grid pattern of an antique kimono she found in a market. Van der Kruijs reproduced a simplified grid from the vintage fabric on acetate and began to wrap porcelain vases with the pattern, leading to overlaps and “breaks” in the grid.
Concurrently, Van der Kruijs researched depictions of geometry in vintage science textbooks from the 1960s, and the work of Ettore Sottsass, whose drawings in Metaphors (1972-78) superposed grids on landscape photos, suggesting how a regular grid can be wed to an irregular topography. The act of covering a three-dimensional object with the two-dimensional grid was repeated when van der Kruijs applied it to a stone she had quarried herself and retained as a sample to use for inspiration, which she calls her “philosopher’s stone”. In her collaboration with Wolf-Gordon, van der Kruijs further developed this work by exploring subtle manipulations of parts of the grid that would yield new patterning and texture.
It is crucial to our mission that we at Wolf-Gordon work with artists and designers of Aliki’s caliber. Her depth of thought and conceptual strength bring a richness of ideas to our upholstery collection that not only elevates the dialogue in our design studio, but that enables us to share with our larger design community.
Our ability to offer these carefully crafted, high-performance textiles at price points that are appropriate for a wide range of commercial interiors makes the entire project even more gratifying.
- Marybeth Shaw, Wolf-Gordon, Chief Creative Officer
VEER by Aliki van der Kruijs consists of three patterns and a total of 24 sku’s. The collection has a distinct color palette of current and forecasted blues, reds, browns, olives and golds, as well as neutrals. The color line was initially generated by van der Kruijs’ photography of weathered architectural materials in Arita. High performing, as well as aesthetically compelling, Float, Turn and Slide exceed all ACT standards for commercial upholstery textiles and have all achieved 100,000 double rubs on the Wyzenbeek abrasion test.
FLOAT, the first pattern that van der Kruijs created for Wolf-Gordon, is formed by a simple shift of a linear segment of boxes off of the rigorous and continuous grid. From this slight “out of line” movement comes a new pattern of alternative character which uses a smooth and refined weave to preserve its strong graphic quality. Float is a high-performance polyester/nylon construction that is offered in seven (7) colorways (rust, printemps, charcoal, white noise, red oxide, buff and azurite).
TURN is a larger scale pattern that shifts a rectangular section of the grid offaxis and superposes it to the regular base grid, resulting in a slight moire effect. TURN’s manipulation is further emphasized by chenille yarns that permit one to feel the shift of the grid as well as see it. Turn, a durable polyester/polyester chenille textile, is offered in seven (7) colorways (fawn, sienna, sage, teal, lapis, graphite, abalone).
SLIDE evolves the original grid into a more linear composition by eliminating the Y axis. The design’s quality is exaggerated by a ridge-like texture, while It is crucial to our mission that we at Wolf-Gordon work with artists and designers of Aliki’s caliber. Her depth of thought and conceptual strength bring a richness of ideas to our upholstery collection that not only elevates the dialogue in our design studio, but that enables us to share with our larger design community.
Our ability to offer these carefully crafted, high-performance textiles at price points that are appropriate for a wide range of commercial interiors makes the entire project even more gratifying. remaining highly graphic. Slide is a sturdy and luxe cotton/polyester/nylon construction that comes in a generous color line of ten (10) shades (eclipse, teal, night, porcelain, sunflower, red oxide, fawn, stone, olive, and red umber).
Grids influence everything: how we structure, how we think, how we make connections. By learning
how they function through studying geometry, I have become fascinated by how we can bend or play
with the structure, and even break free of its constraints.
- Aliki van der Kruijs, Designer