Furniture News

Posted on Thursday, March 7, 2013 by Christina Linden

In the past year, Orfeo Quagliata (Wood/Furniture 1999) has designed: exterior vinyl graphics for an Aeromexico 767 airplane; sets for Mexico's massively popular annual 24-hour-long television and radio broadcast benefit Teletón; glass tiles for architectural interiors and exteriors; jewelry; window displays for Barneys New York; hotel lobbies; coffee tables; whiskey glasses; and garden features for millionaires' homes.

Quagliata was born and raised in the Bay Area; today his studio is based in Mexico City, and the world is his oyster. It is extremely unusual for a designer to operate in so many media and at so many scales of production, from a tiny piece of jewelry to an airplane exterior, but maintaining a robust and diverse practice keeps his creative energies high . . . and ensures that his design work will be in demand no matter whether the global economy is ebbing or flowing.

His schedule is typically jam-packed; when we spoke for this piece, he was getting ready to catch a plane for a new overseas commission: "I'm going to Taiwan to work on an installation on the grounds of new high-rise residential towers. The work is two reflecting pools with these big, faceted, blinged-out, illuminated glass sculptural forms. These kinds of huge commissions are always fun and overwhelming at the same time."

Posted on Monday, March 4, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

Barbara Holmes, "feed/rest/nest" (2013)

The work discussed in this story is on view in the exhibition By-Product Becomes Product at Intersection for the Arts (925 Mission Street, San Francisco) through March 30, 2013. There is an artists' talk on Saturday, March 23, at 1 p.m. (free and open to the public).

We all know that formaldehyde is toxic, but you may not know that it's an essential component of the glues that bind together such commonly used construction materials as plywood and particle board.

And unlike asbestos, which becomes inhalable and therefore harmful only when disturbed, these composite wood panels actually off-gas formaldehyde all the time.

The artist Christine Lee, who has been a lecturer at CCA for the past several years, was concerned about the effects of formaldehyde gas -- not only on people dwelling in structures made of these materials, but also on the artists who use them, possibly without even knowing they are exposing themselves to harm.

Posted on Monday, October 29, 2012 by Allison Byers

When Michele Marti rebuilt two Victorian chairs as one, it wasn't just about furniture.
"I was single for so long, I started to notice the gestures of love," says Marti, a 26-year-old upholsterer and designer who lives in Oakland.
She found a large, boxy chair at the Alameda flea market and used a small Japanese hand saw to remove its right arm and part of its base - she then tucked a smaller ornate, rounded chair against it, built their base together and reattached the larger chair's arm to wrap around her. She called it the Lovers.

Posted on Thursday, October 18, 2012 by Allison Byers

Does the word laminate conjure images of rippled, split or peeling Formica counters? Yeah, me too. But a group of California College of the Arts students reversed my perception by translating the surface material into fluid, natural and innovative chair designs.

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Posted on Tuesday, October 9, 2012 by Allison Byers

A former national arts magazine editor and freelance writer with a degree in literature, Jeni Tu studied Industrial Design at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, finished her degree in San Francisco at California College of the Arts, and re-launched her career as a furniture and product designer. Tu lends us the details of a busy day for this month’s Designer Dailies.

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Posted on Thursday, September 13, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

CCA Furniture: Wilsonart International
Blurb, 2012
Hardcover/paperback, 50 pages, $28.95/37.95

Russell Baldon (Furniture chair) put together this book to document the coursework and travels of his furniture class in fall 2011. The finished works were exhibited in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco. Read more in these CCA news articles:
CCA Furniture Department in NYC
Furniture Program Wilsonart Challenge Exhibition

Posted on Tuesday, August 14, 2012 by Jim Norrena

Kaii Tu's innovative design process has him in the spotlight. (Photo: Clint Bowers, Interiors & Sources)View slideshow 

Windgate Fellow

To say CCA alumnus Kaii Tu (BFA Individualized Major 2012) is on the right path toward career success is probably the understatement of the year. That's because Tu, who graduated with high distinction, was recently awarded a 2012 Windgate Fellowship by UNC Asheville’s Center for Craft, Creativity and Design (CCCD).

Read about the 2012 Wingate Fellows »

The $15,000 fellowship, for which more than 120 universities across the United States nominate two graduating seniors with exemplary skill in craft, is one of the largest awards in art and design in the nation.

Tu graduated from Harvard University summa cum laude with a degree in Visual and Environmental Studies, but he's also one of the youngest persons to reach the level of brand manager at Procter & Gamble, his employer from 2005 to 2009 in Cincinnati, where he worked in product design, brand architecture, and business management.

Posted on Thursday, June 28, 2012 by Ace Lehner

From August 3 to 5, approximately 30 students will present their work at CCA's "School to Market" booth at the American Craft Council Show at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco.

With more than 230 of the top contemporary jewelry, clothing, furniture, and home-decor artists from across the country, this is the largest juried craft show west of the Rockies, providing an unparalleled opportunity for students to exhibit their fine art and functional craft works in a high-profile venue.

Posted on Thursday, June 28, 2012 by Amanda E. Gross

from Team JuaBar IMPACT 2012 project proposal

Within the next few weeks, the three teams of CCA students who won IMPACT Social Entrepreneurship Awards will be heading to Alaska, Tanzania, and Mexico to attempt innovative social transformations. Bolstered by the support of their $10,000 IMPACT grants and their community partner organizations, the teams -- KVAK TV, JuaBar, and 20/20 FOTO -- will work to empower three different communities to address pressing local concerns. Each team brings together a mix of graduate and undergraduate students from different academic programs.

IMPACT is one of the anchor programs at CCA's Center for Art and Public Life, providing students with opportunities to build relationships for social change. It is about innovation, community, collaboration, and making. It celebrates the entrepreneurial drive of CCA students combined with their desire to create a tangible, positive influence within a specific community.

Posted on Wednesday, May 2, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

Furniture faculty member Barbara Holmes spent most of February installing a tour de force exhibition in an impressive new space in one of San Francisco's more down-and-out neighborhoods. Located at 1045 Mission Street between 6th and 7th Streets, it will be on view through Sunday, May 27, 2012. Since it's viewable only through the front windows, visitors are welcome to come take a look 24 hours a day. At night the piece is theatrically lit with interior spotlights.

Read the press release

1045 Mission Street is a 100-foot-long window-front space on the ground floor of SOMA Residencies. In 2011, the owners invited Recology's artist in residence (AIR) program to utilize it for off-site exhibits. Holmes is one of the first artists to install there, and she leaped on the opportunity to conceive her most ambitious piece to date -- one that would specifically take advantage of the entire available space and the nighttime illumination possibilities. The opportunity to create something so abstract, almost alive, on this big of a scale, was deeply interesting.

Also interesting were her interactions with people who live in the neighborhood and passed by while she was installing. The door was closed, but that didn't stop people from tapping on the window pretty much daily, wanting to ask about what she was doing and, occasionally, relate their life story. "It's a pretty tough neighborhood. Sometimes the interactions were funny, sometimes sad. A lot of the people who were passing by, seeing the piece, were not people who would ordinarily go to art galleries, so it was wonderful to reach them with an artwork."