There is a saying ‘all that glitters isn’t gold’, which people often use to describe an object that may appear luxurious, desirable or expensive but is actually quite worthless and cheap upon closer inspection. The same could be said for that exact quote once you learn that it is in fact a ‘cheaper version’ of the original ‘all that glisters is not gold’, taken from the Shakespearian play The Merchant of Venice, in 1596.
I was reminded of this quote when looking at the offerings in the Greenhouse section of the International Stockholm Furniture Fair. Except I wasn’t agreeing with the quote! What I saw before me were items worthy of being given the tag of luxurious, desirable and expensive all the while not being made from ‘precious’ gold.
The first of these amazing gold like pieces glittering to catch my eye were a collection of brass bowls by Luca Nichetto for Skultuna. The collection, beautifully christened Timeline, are multi-use bowls that over time due to oxidation will generate a dark/light contrast between the surface and the incised pattern of circles. It is hearing the story of the inspiration behind Timeline that really adds ‘gold like’ value to this collection of bowls. Growing up as a child in Venice, Luca would sit and “watch grandmother polish the traditional brass door knockers on her front door. After being cleaned, these objects, which took a variety of forms and were typical of Venetian homes, always remained darker in the grooves and incised areas where the cleaner’s hand or brush could not remove the oxidation”.
Other ‘Gold’ on show at Greenhouse included a cool range of brass products by Carl Hagerling. Carl displayed his works on the Landet stand and featured a great kerosene lamp named Fotogen, a cool table cloth clip in the shape of a hand, and Prastkrage a candle holder inspired by the leaf of a water-lily and melting stearin.