Designer and object-maker Mike Newins tends towards a few self-imposed rules for his furniture. Currently, the wood is always maple, a simple material that lends itself gratefully to all manner of experiments. Objects are either bare wood or painted with an approximation of International Klein Blue, a velvety hue Newins regards as universally beautiful and trend-transcending. The pieces must be functional, and often made so by the path of most resistance. Instead of simply reinforcing a fragile table top with 4 well-placed legs, Newins creates an otherworldly 28-legged centipede, a final product that is as much inside joke as it is a statement piece.
Within these constraints, Newins’ objects thrive. They wiggle, wink, invite, and obscure. They operate in the world with a great deal of playfulness and mystery. Like the works of Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, they are simple forms, forged via complex processes, capable of expressing big things.
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