(jiří macek) Tomás Alonso has been experiencing an exceptional season based on the range of new products he has recently presented. However, even though the number itself does not have to mean much, it includes great feats and an exhibition entitled Variations on A Tube at the NextLevel Gallery in Paris.
The Spanish designer currently lives in London, where he studied at the Royal College of Art and became one of the founding members of the OKAY studio, under the flag of which generational peers who possess similar opinions of design regularly exhibit, e.g. Raw Edges and Peter Marigold. Like them, Tomás Alonso is a big favorite of ours; each of his new projects are our joy, whether they are tables, chairs, or the lights that he presented at 100% Design in London and at the above-mentioned exhibition in the NextLevel Gallery.
Tomás Alonso develops basic designer topics, such as lights, tables, and chairs into unexpected, yet very simple products with the mere help of a line in the form of a tube, wooden lath, or a simple board. The chair combines the wood and the tube, causing a seemingly minimalist form to be transformed into a story. Seemingly haphazard combinations of materials, surfaces, and primitive solutions of details reminiscent of lay DIY people give objects humanity and are always perfectly elaborated to provide a powerful visual experience or open new possibilities of utilizing the objects.
The Mr. Light range of lights is a typical example because it reduces the shape of the lamp to a mere intersection of lines. After the extraordinary lamp, which we admired at the Design Tide in Tokyo last year, the new pieces include its table version in two variants. Even though they make use of T5 LED diode tubes, they differ both in shape and use. The Mr. Light Junior tripod is derived from the large floor lamp; however, it enables, thanks to its size, several positions for lighting. The other variant is aestheticized into an imposing curve that elaborately casts light onto the required part of the table. If the table is designed by Tomás Alonso, it definitely is an archetype. Consider the table that the German producer Moormann started to make according to Alonso’s design or have a look at the new V&A edition in which Alonso transforms a Victorian table and chairs into a simple puzzle consisting of individual boards and bent tubes. Thus, any space that is filled with his furniture easily turns into a symphony of lines. A brilliant symphony – or a romance.