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 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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