ICFF Studio rounds up 11 young furniture designers

These prototypes by emerging talent from around the world will be shopped to manufacturers at this year’s ICFF Studio in New York.

The International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF), which opens in New York City this Saturday, will feature prototypes by 11 young designers, all finalists in the second annual ICFF Studio Bernhardt Design competition.

The work is chosen for its commercial viability so don’t expect any outlandish or experimental pieces designed to change the way people think about furniture. Like the Salone in Milan, the ICFF is all about selling furniture (albeit on a smaller scale and with a bias towards North American-based design brands).

The project, a collaboration between New York-based furniture company Bernhardt Design and tradeshow organisers Emerald Expositions, hooks up promising young prototype-bearing designers with suitable potential manufacturers. Entries are judged on the design aesthetics and the economic viability of large-scale manufacturing. 

Side Leaf dining table and walnut and white ash step stool by David Vu

Vu’s fascination with objects initially developed through his camera lens, when he discovered he was more interested in the pieces themselves than photographing them. He uses traditional woodworking techniques to craft contemporary design pieces.

Thor daybed by Fahmida Lam

Lam is a Brooklyn-based designer with a Master’s in industrial design from Pratt Institute,as well as a degree in finance and economics. She focusses on creating classically designed home furnishings. Her Thor daybed won her a coveted finalist position through its seamless blend of beauty and utility.

Flow table by Funi Ding

Ding’s Flow table gracefully blends a black translucent or clear glass top with an angled three-legged aluminium or brass support system. His Merge lounge chair in bent walnut “celebrates organic connection and strength in flexibility”.

Minun stool by Hines Fischer

Fischer’s Minun stool appears as a simple, seamless natural form. He favours subtle colours and natural materials that offer timelessness over fleeting trends. His studies and work across the globe have greatly influenced his current works through his interactions and human experiences.

Chinese chair by Hui Ling Cheng

Environmental designer Cheng’s passion lies in hospitality and branding, but for this project she skilfully uses Chinese historical influences and Western design to create a new version of the Chinese chair.

Copenhagen chair by Jonah Willcox-Healey

Wilcox-Healey is continually stimulated by the purity of material and form in Japanese and Scandinavian design. A love of well-crafted Danish design inspired his stackable Copenhagen chair. “The chair welcomes you to sit with its simple and truthful design.” Two distinct forms are created by each piece individually as well as when stacked.

Divide lighting by Jordan Tomnuk

Canadian Tomnuk’s influence for his Divide lighting series came from closely observing his surroundings – in particular, the contrasting natural light of a typical day. He enjoys working on a variety of industrial design projects and focusses on improving functionality to take us back to an era when items were made to last.

Gradient shelving by Jordi López-Aguiló

López-Aguiló is an award-winning Spanish designer who has collaborated on works with some of the world’s top talent. His Gradient shelving unit uses steel and poplar board to produce an interesting visual in the arrangement of floating shelves. He approaches each project as methodical process, emphasising the importance of extensive research.

Lattice dining chair by Laura Yeh

Yeh’s influence for her Lattice dining chair comes from her love of all things clean and simple. The chair’s backrest continues its curve into arm rests that, when drawn up to a table, form a level plane with its surface.

Relax porcelain collection by Tamer Nakisci

The European Union named Turkish designer Naskisci “one of Europe's 100 Young Creative Talents”. He travels between London and Istanbul, where most of his projects are undertaken. The subtly undulating lines of his porcelain tableware create a more casual aesthetic true to the collection’s name.

Lea by Hanna Kruse

German designer Kruse is already on Elle Decoration’s “name to watch” list. Her “Tarvos Kore” furniture collection characteristically produces simple shapes using both hand crafted and modern manufacturing techniques. For these furniture pieces she applied a liquid metal varnish to the polished ash surface and describes the collection as “a play of light and shade, matte and reflection."