Stockholm furniture fair 16.02.08

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Design quartet Front created a miniature pine forest in the lobby of the Nordic Light hotel for Stockholm design week this year.

The installation, opened on Tuesday, was made up of wooden benches dotted among pine trees. But walk onto the wooden floorboards and your feet sink in – because they are made of foam. The seemingly wooden benches are actually spongy sofas.

“We like to play with people’s expectations,” says Front member Anna Lindgren. “You think it’s going to be wood, but it’s soft.”

Made for Swedish furniture company Materia, the seating comprises a steel structure upholstered in foam, which is covered in a wood-effect fabric. In an age when veneers pretend to be wood and plastic furniture emulates steel, it’s good to see designers play with dishonesty and challenge our perception of taste. It all looks so perfect in a tasteful Scandinavian way that it hurts a little to watch your feet sink in.

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