Tom Dixon, Flame Cut Series - Swing, 2008,
Mild steel with wax finish, 217 x 241 x 130 cm. Edition of 8 + AP
Simultaneously to the common opening night of the « QuARTier des Bains », Edward Mitterrand and Stéphanie Cramer are pleased to announce the second episode of a series of exhibitions dedicated to a selection of the most prominent contemporary designers.
Thus, after Studio Job, Mitterrand+Cramer, helped by swiss design curators Sophie et Philippe Cramer, are now proud to inaugurate the first solo exhibition in Switzerland by british design star, Tom Dixon, with twelve recent works processed by three different production means.
Observing this variety of mediums and technologies was the original idea behind this exhibition.
CU29 is a remarkable copper chair, based on Dixon's extremely lightweight Expanded Polystyrene Chair (EPS Chair) first introduced in 2006 during the London Design Festival.
With CU29, nanocrystalline copper is 'grown' onto the EPS Chair using a highly sophisticated electroplating process. During full immersion in a liquid bath containing pure copper crystals, the textured surface of the chair's intricately curved industrial form attracts the honeycombed-patterned crystals, resulting in a highly-detailed copper cladding, extremely strong yet surprisingly lightweight.
Each piece, by definition of the process, is unique; each is numbered and signed.
Tom has used the industrial process of flame cutting steel, which is traditionally used for manufacturing tanks, submarines and bank safes. Solid enough to resist the inconvenience of civil conflict and world wars and durable enough for the next 1000 years.
An installation of unfeasibly heavyweight furniture where Dixon challenges our ideas of acceptable materials, processes and notions of fitness for purpose. Little concession has been made to practicality or functionality, apart from the ironic reference to flat-pack furniture.
Cast (produced for the exhibition)
The act of working in these super lightweight modern foam materials allows a total flexibility and speed in construction, which make the creative process akin to action painting or abstract expressionism in the sixties.
When transformed into aluminium through the casting process, the unique object is then fossilised, as the original evaporates into thin air, to be replaced by solid, heavyweight aluminium.
The result is an object which is a one off, artefacts that bears all the marks of the making activity.
Once cooled the piece is finished with a gloss stove enamel which is heat applied giving a high quality, corrosion resistant, durable finish.
Tom Dixon's work is part of the permanent collections of many major museums, including:
MOMA, New York
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Victoria and Albert Museum London
M.A.K Museum Vienna
Design Museum London
Centre Pompidou, Paris