Here is a collection of fixtures, cabinetry and furniture for the kitchen and bath that showcases innovative design concepts from across the pond. Most are production pieces, although a couple are still prototypes. The kitchen increasingly acquires a chameleon-like quality, continuing the European trend of recasting dedicated cooking areas into multi-purpose spaces in the home. To achieve this, appliances, sinks and fixtures retract, or are hidden by doors & drawers when not in use. In the bathroom, vanities with integrated sinks offer easy maintenance, clean lines, and exciting design possibilities.
The stunning €300,000 Berloni “Not for Food” prototype on display at the Shanghai Expo is an ambitious effort by architect Enzo Eusebi to create a cross-over product that is not only geared for cooking, but also accommodates work and play.
Looking more like a starship console than a kitchen-lounger, the sleek carbon fiber piece allows one to relax in the semi-circular sofa, listen to music, work on the internet and watch TV as desired.
For something more nostalgic, this bathroom vanity and storage cabinet in shocking pink lacquer paired with the round mirror invoke an Art Deco sensibility. Designed by A. Arter & F. Citton, the bold colors and sweeping lines of this vanity merge seamlessly from the counter into the tall convex wall unit.
The lilac lacquer Zebrano of the vanity is topped with lilac colored crystal to provide a sophisticated touch.
The Valcucine kitchen offers generous amounts of counter space and storage on both ends of the softly curved island.
The kitchen’s numerous options reinforce the sinuous look with round stainless steel sinks, curvilinear hobs, vent hoods, wall cabinets, and semi-circular storage units.
The unusual shape of the Novello sink allows for creative placements of the fixture. On a more practical note, the deeper, elongated bowl can be helpful to wheelchair users.
This sensuous bath tub can be installed in different ways – as a free standing fixture or installed next to the wall. But nothing beats articulating the wash basin with the bath tub for this clever look of an oversized spoon with a ribbon-like handle.
The funky Hersey Kiss shaped exhaust hood, gloss white and pink palette, and soft rounded lines of the angled breakfast bar are somehow reminds me of the mid-century futurism of The Jetsons.
The cooktops are inset into the counter and artfully designed to echo the shape of the hood. The cluster takes on the stylized form of a plant (or so it seems), adding an unexpected twist to the term ‘organic cooking’!
I love the attention to details: the directional Rosewood grain in this cabinet accentuates the flowing lines of the design. The Corian wash basin can be seamlessly integrated into the counter with a variety of shape options: as (what imaginatively looks to me) a stylized dog bone, contrast colored round under-mount, or romantic heart-shaped sink.
This piece of bathroom furniture is not just all good looks – its drawers glide out to provide abundant storage, easily satisfying demands for both function and form!
The following 4 kitchens by Philippe Starck all share a neo-baroque aesthetic and the philosophy of furniturized kitchens which are designed to support the users’ daily activities of reading, dining, working & entertaining. To maintain focus on the design, appliances are kept hidden behind the seek doors and vent hoods disappear into the wall cabinets.