Dezeen Magazine

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

Office KGDVS and Pieter Vermeersch create first collaborative furniture collection

A giant ombre wall divider that rotates to create a mirrored surface features in a new collection based on circular forms that marks the fifth anniversary of Brussels' Maniera gallery.

Created by architects Kersten Geers and David Van Severen, and artist Pieter Vermeersch – who is known for his gradient murals – the Maniera 19 collection is currently on display in an exhibition at the gallery.

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

It includes a massive, semi-circular wall-divider made up of slats that rotate to create either an ombre beige-to-pink or a highly reflective surface.

The slats are suspended from an aluminium rail and are made from polyester and mirrored PVC.

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

A cylindrical post made of semi-transparent, mirrored glass functions as a floor lamp, with a fluorescent light inside. The 40-centimetre diameter is achieved by joining two half-cylinders of glass with aluminium.

Also included in the collection is a prototype for an outdoor sofa with a curved seat made from a large-grid steel mesh that requires 1,400 welding points to create.

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

"It looks so industrial but it's 100 per cent handwork," explained Amaryllis Jacobs, co-founder of the gallery, who oversees the production of each collection commissioned by Maniera.

"The cross view is a circle that is long, and from the side you see half a circle, from which the sofa hangs."

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

Finally, a table with a steel base and a circular top made from Bianco Neve marble.

Half of the table top has had a thin layer carved away from the surface, with the stone replaced by a layer of the exact thickness made from oil paint that is added by hand by the artist.

"The whole painting received a coating so that it's really usable,” said Jacobs. "You can eat on the table and even spill some red wine. We produced the table with Van Der Vegen Marble, a very well known Belgian marble workshop."

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

The collection is the second created by Office Kersten Geers David Van Severen for the gallery, which celebrates its fifth birthday this year.

"They were the first ones to say yes, to accept a commission even though we didn't have a gallery at the time because the first show was in our home," Jacobs told Dezeen. "It was important to start with them at a time when Flemish architecture was really becoming important internationally."

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

Maniera specialises in offering architects and artists the opportunity to make collectible furniture designs, often for the first time in their careers.

Every exhibition features at least two designers from different disciplines, although they normally create separate collections, and it has rapidly become one of Europe's leading collectible design galleries.

Office KGDVS Pieter Vermeersch Maniera gallery

"Usually we invite people that have never done furniture before and that come from another discipline, but we feel that we have to start showing the same designers more – the collectors want to see more of what they can do, how they can evolve," said Jacobs.

"The briefing is very simple – we ask them to make a show with four to six pieces that are clearly linked to their architecture or their artwork, that show the same methods, the same formal language. This time, for the first time, it's very collaborative work."

Vermeersch and Office Kersten Geers David Van Severen had previously collaborated when the architects invited the artist to create a series of murals on their Solo House II in Spain in 2017.

Founded in 2002 by Geers and Van Severen, Office KGDVS's projects include a music centre in Bahrain covered in steel mesh curtains that can be lifted to reveal performances inside. The studio was awarded the Silver Lion at the 2010 Venice Architecture Biennale and the Belgian Prize for Architecture in 2013 and 2015.

Photography is by Jeroen Verrecht.