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Contemporary & Modern Furniture Defined

There seems to be a lot of confusion about what contemporary or modern furniture actually means and what it truly encompasses. The dictionary definition means to ‘follow the latest ideas’, which overlooks the design principle completely and fails to grasp the overall essence. In a nutshell – contemporary, modern furniture is anything made after the nineteenth century that incorporates modernist art influences and evolving simplistic designs. It also takes into account the use of space in which the furniture will be placed as well as the overall architectural design of a person’s home. All these aspects define contemporary furniture and good designers will consider this at every stage of the design process.


Key Differences between Modern Furniture and Other Furniture

As contemporary furniture began to gain momentum in the 50’s, the Museum of Modern Art in New York defined the trend into three core categories that now dictate modern furniture designs globally. These are Design, Materials and Philosophy


Design by Brodie Neill

When I came by Brodie Neill’s work I was quite impressed with his designs. The organic shapes feel to have life, they aren’t static. For some reason most work like this is somewhat off-putting to me but several of his designs resonate with me. The Super Nova (pics 1,3,4,9) is pretty futuristic but there is an elegance there that draws me in. The COWIRE chair (pics 2,7,8) is a impressive design that enhances the idea of what bent ply can accomplish. Brodie also has some nice custom limited and commission pieces in his body of work. His site is a must visit.

“Brodie is fascinated with organic forms that have a continuous line and shape; the look is sinuous, elegant and modern. It’s something that cannot be achieved by hand alone but requires sophisticated digital tools and techniques so with Brodie’s designs, not only are the production processes shaped to fit the vision of the pieces but working with such advanced technologies also allows the process to drive the idea itself.”

Brodie Neill

Brodie Neill

Architecture and design of the twentieth century

Galería Miquel Alzueta specializes in architecture and design of the twentieth century. By now you know I very much like galleries and stores that display their goods in a minimal beautiful manner. Galería Miquel Alzueta has some beautiful displays and they also do a fantastic job with their exhibitions. Jean Prouvé, Le Corbusier, Charlotte Perriand, and Mathieu Matégot just to name a few.

“Miquel Alzueta gallery is a space that combines contemporary art with the architecture and design of the twentieth century. Located in Barcelona, ​​in a former factory of 500 sqm in the center of the city, its spaces are a clear example of the trends of contemporary art and the great designers.”

twentieth century

twentieth century

Philippe Malouin Design

I have seen the work of Philippe Malouin before but I had never followed it to his website. The simplicity and beauty that are put into his designs is stunning. My mind was sort of blown with the glass tube and marble mobile “mobile for Jay”. I love when I see design like this mobile, something completely redesigned using unexpected shapes and materials.

“Canadian Philippe Malouin holds a bachelor’s degree in Design from the Design Academy Eindhoven. He has also studied at the École Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle in Paris and University of Montreal. He lives and works in London. He set up his studio in 2009 after working for English designer Tom Dixon. He is also the director of POST-OFFICE, the architectural and interiors design practice.”

Philippe Malouin

Philippe Malouin

Brazilian Modernism by James

Brazilian Modernism may not be at the forefront of most peoples minds when it comes to modernism but James Gallery had different ideas. Started by PAUL VIGUIER and his wife, collectors of modern already made a trip to Brazil and decided to make that their focus. I have always been inthralled with the work of many Brazilian designers. Maybe it is becasue of the beautiful rosewood that was utilized heavily in their designs. It is evident that they keep a very particular collection and display it perfectly.

Brazilian Modernism

Brazilian Modernism


Rick Owens and Carol Rama had a wonderful collaboration and showing at MUSÉE D’ART MODERNE DE LA VILLE DE PARIS. The show has long been over but I recently just came across the images form the show and they are stunning. I have always like the furniture designs of Owens for many reasons. The simplicity of shape, scale and materials are just a few characteristic that draw me into his work. The furniture and art work so well with each other. I love the benches but you would need the perfect space for them.



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