London-based David Gill Gallery is proud to present My Memoirs a new series of furniture designs by the Dutch-born designer Sebastian Brajkovic from November 12 to December 22, 2023. Using an inspirational combination of hand modelling, 3D scanning and his bespoke design programme, Brajkovic’s new pieces conform to his fascination with the history of sculptural art, while combining it with contemporary design.
“What I love about Sebastian’s work is the way that he takes the roots of traditional and historical pieces and the possibilities of the computer, and creates something new but comfortably recognisable at the same time. You can relate to its historical essence. He plays beautifully with archetypes,” says David Gill, in an official statement. The gallery first showed Brajkovic’s work in 2019.
The new work by the furniture designer on display at the art gallery is no exception. The starting point of the Dancing Queen candelabra is derived from the free movements of a person dancing that he momentarily froze into a two or five-pronged lamp design cast in stainless steel. A commanding table lamp in the same series, appears to be dripping with aluminium ribbons. To create it, Brajkovic traced around an existing classic lamp with a metal thread, then took away the core, and heaped it with strips of clay which, when dry, resulted in the subtly curled and collapsed forms.
“I make models in anything I can find: clay, paper, styrofoam, bits of old furniture. Then I 3D scan it into the computer. It has given me an enormous amount of freedom” explains Brajkovic. Once corrected and complete, the files can be sent to foundries to be cast in aluminium, steel or bronze. “I also work a lot with Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset. My friend designed a virtual room for me, in which I can place my furniture. I can walk around it, and look underneath it. There are no more surprises when the real object arrives. I used to say I liked my drawings better than the pieces that appeared for real. Now that is no longer the case,” he adds.
In the case of the Garnier chair, however, Brajkovic has taken real object–the fauteuils found in the famous Parisian opera house where the wooden seat back continues around just one side of the chair and treats it to his surrealist vision, melting and extending the side downwards to form a soft curving leg, now made in patinated bronze. The Apeiron console, a single sheet of bronze that curls seductively beneath itself, is named after the Greek word for infinity. The Grove coffee table is another exercise in clarity, where three cast aluminium legs look like the grooved swirls of butter that used to be a standard of smart hotel breakfast tables.
“I aim for a sense of mobility and movement in my work. I like to think I am capturing energy. It’s no surprise that I am also influenced by Chinese calligraphy, which also contains movement and flow, like a moment in time. Life doesn’t stand still. I want to encapsulate that feeling,” says Brajkovic.