Menu gives it a whirl. The Dancing Pendant for the Danish brand resembles nothing so much as the folds of a ballerina's twirling skirt. The designers at Iskos-Berlin certainly know how to "make" an entrance—or indeed any other room—with this oversize confection of a light. For the construction, they chose a pet material: PET felt, a recycled fabrication produced from discarded soft drink bottles. As to what gave them the inspiration? "We see design as an art of storytelling."
21.5" h x 37.5" dia (54.6x95.3cm)
Light source: 1 x 60W 120v E26 A19 Incandescent bulb (not included)
From lighting and furniture, tabletop to bath, the wide offerings of Menu speaks to this Copenhagen-based company’s guiding quest for functional originality. “It’s about creating aesthetically pleasing designs that evoke true feelings as well as improving processes in people’s daily lives,” says Menu founder Bjarne Hansen. This is also reflected in its stable of influential creatives including Norm Architects, Afteroom Studio, Jonas Wagell and Krøyer-Sætter-Lassen among others standouts.
Menu is just as dedicated to responsible manufacturing as innovation. Working to locate new partners in developing countries around the world, the company searches out local factories or small private co-operations to turn out high quality goods and also provide a better economic foundation for the people involved in that production.
“One of the biggest challenges for a designer,” notes Boris Berlin of Iskos-Berlin, “is to create quiet objects that don’t intrude with their egocentricity, don’t compete with the surroundings or the architecture, but still carry a strong identity and are easy to recognize and remember.” With design partner Aleksej Iskos, the duo’s Copenhagen-based studio has gained international renown for its furniture, industrial and graphic design. Leningrad-born, Boris previously founded much-lauded Komplot Design, where Ukraine native Aleksej was employed as a longtime assistant. Collaborating with some of the world’s most prestigious manufacturers, Iskos-Berlin’s work has been featured in museums around the world and at both MoMA and the Danish Design Museum.
The partners say their aim is for a sharper and more precise take on design with an emphasis on delving into new technologies and materials. Likening their process to the art of storytelling, they admit that the narrative of a product may be complex but, in the end, the clearer the story is, the more likely people are to understand it. As to finding inspiration, Aleksej says it comes from everywhere. “From the beauty of nature in all its shapes, constructions and materials, to industrial processes,” he says. &