Recycled Furniture Art: Old as the New Modern
By Neila Columbo
December 18, 2012
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTES – At the vivid intersection of sustainability and design, Lukasz Siodmok and Andrzej Sapierzyski, founders of LA Design Studio in Poland, have simultaneously captured the attention of environmentalists, automotive enthusiasts, and the art world with their design concept of creating recycled furniture from automotive engineering and high performance art. Inspired by a passion for 1960s vintage automobiles, furniture, and conservation, Siodmok and Sapierzyski have accomplished a rare feat with their Spirit of 427 furniture collection.
Classic pieces such as the Sofa427, inspired by the front seat of a vintage American sports car, and the illuminating Armchair427, styled with the red glow of brake lights, reflect the philosophy of the designers: redefining old as the new modern.
Lukasz Siodmok spoke with Sierra Club Green Home about the inspiration for creating LA Design Studio with his partner Sapierzyski, his philosophy on how sustainability influences the designs, and future plans for the collection.
SCGH: I understand LA Design Studio is a collaboration between you and Andrzej Sapierzyski. How did you both come to envision LA Design Studio?
LS: Our studio came just like that—from one meeting it was like a spark and mixture of our personalities. I was more into graphic design and used to manage the aluminum hot-rod car production. Andrzej was more focused on interior design and has great taste for useful objects. I wanted to make a car; he wanted to make furniture. The result you know (he notes with a smile).
SCGH: Are all materials utilized in the production process recycled pieces?
LS: Not every material, but as much as possible. In terms of a unique collection like Spirit of 427, sometimes you cannot capture original vintage pieces. In this circumstance, we need to produce them, but we always utilize materials that can be easy recycled, such as pure aluminum.
SCGH: How would you describe your and Andrzej’s philosophy on sustainability and its influence on your designs, given their focus on recycled automotive pieces to create designer furniture?
LS: Sustainability is integral to our philosophy of design. This not only influences our current Spirit of 427 collection, but also our approach in every phase of the design process. I am actually very concerned with the lifecycle of products, given the effect it has on the natural world and ecosystems. With our designs, one knows exactly how the pieces are being utilized and recycled in a truly meaningful way.
It is interesting that in Poland we have had a free market system now for just 22 years. In the previous planning system of communism, no private factories or goods existed, so there was no capitalistic idea of design. While I am so grateful to work in a time of greater freedom to be creative, there is also something to learn from a time when everything made to last for many years, with needed qualities. I dream of a time when designers can focus on developing designs that meet the needs of society without having to produce excessive quantities of products or pieces that will need to be replaced within a short time. Essentially, “less is truly more” would sum up our philosophy.
SCGH: What have you and Andrzej found to be most challenging in the design process, and what has been most inspiring?
LS: The challenging part is creating the aluminum pieces; the shaping of aluminum is a very fragile process, given it requires hand-made, natural labor. What I find most inspiring is that we never make a project to “drawer” (i.e. using a model template), but rather, we realize every single project that comes to our mind through this creative process.
SCGH: What are the future plans for LA Design Studio, and is your collection available internationally?
LS: We plan to expand the line of Spirit of 427 a little bit—with some lamps and a conference table. Then we will move forward with the next models of cars, like Ferrari or Porsche. While our main office and manufacturing design is completed in Poland, we have a selection of showrooms in Europe and one in the USA, and we just recently expanded to Russia. We will also be showcasing our pieces at the Monte-Carlo International Fair in 2013.
For more information about LA Design Studio, and to view the Spirit of 427 collection, please visit them online.
© 2012 SCGH, LLC.