Category: International Designer
Exhibitor: Brunner GmbH
Design: Ippolito Fleitz Group GmbH, Stuttgart, Germany,
Fabrication: Hospes Team GmbH, Leinfelden-Echterdingen, Germany, 49-711-78-24-29-0, www.hospesteam.de
Show: Salone Internazionale del Mobile, 2011
Size: 23-by-33 feet
Cost/Square Foot: $144
hen fortune calls," a Yiddish proverb goes, "offer her a chair." When fortune called Brunner GmbH
in the guise of the 2011 Salone Internazionale del Mobile, the Rheinau-Freistett, Germany-based chair manufacturer offered her 74 of them.
Teaming up with designers at Ippolito Fleitz Group GmbH, the company wanted to leave a lasting impression with the architects and designers who attended the Milan furniture fair. So Brunner arranged its furniture in the 23-by-33-foot booth to resemble a show of avant-garde art more than a display of pedestrian goods, an effect that mesmerized Exhibit Design Awards judges. "This demonstrates the power of a single, well-executed idea," said one judge in honoring
Brunner with the EDGE Award for Exhibit Design and Graphics Excellence.
Inside the booth, designers suspended 60 of Brunner's plastic-mesh Twin chairs in varying colors from an overhead truss by thin steel cables. To attendees' eyes, the arrangement of the chairs was more magical than mechanical, as if the exhibit's designers had switched off the earth's gravitational pull, sending the feather-light furniture flying into orbit.
Despite its modest 759-square-foot space, the exhibit felt remarkably roomy inside. The spacious illusion was created by 27,000 reflective polystyrene shingles that covered the curved interior walls. Overlaying the booth's 16-foot-high walls as well as its ceiling, the veneer of shingles stretched and distorted the space
with the woozy vertigo of a paradoxically sophisticated circus fun house.
Suffice it to say, by placing a mundane product in an unorthodox setting, Brunner found a way to keep
curious attendees on the edge of their seats. e