Fogo Island Inn furniture
Seating & tables, 2011 - ongoing
I have been working on a commission to design furniture for a new hotel being built on Fogo Island in Canada. Located off the north east coast of Newfoundland, this small island is a unique & wonderful place with a rich heritage & dramatic landscape of cliffs, coves, lakes, woods & marshes.
The Fogo Island Inn is part of a series of new projects & enterprises initiated by the Shorefast Foundation, a locally based charity, & the affiliated Fogo Island Arts Corporation to bring artists & visitors to the island & revitalise an economy which had historically been dependent on fishing. Alongside the hotel, a series of artist studios are being built in different communities which are also designed by Norway based Saunders Architecture, headed by Newfoundland born Todd Saunders.
My involvement started when I was put forward on a shortlist by Studio Ilse - the designers responsible for the interior concept of the building who were familiar with the trestles & bench I had designed & made for a wedding. A number of designers were chosen & given briefs for specific items in different parts of the building with the intention that the designs have a sense of place without being a pastiche of the furniture from the island's past. All the elements will be made by local craftspeople thus generating employment & developing skills for future projects.
I have been asked to design flexible, space efficient seating & tables for the function space & am developing four pieces: a hardwood stacking chair, a folding timber bench & two different tables. These all draw from the prevalent typologies & vernacular traditions, & are intended to be very explicitly of the island. The designs are still under wraps but the images below show some of the inspiration.
The Inn is due for completion in 2012.