Unusual pieces of furniture with distinctive sculptural aesthetics have been trending for a while and for correct reasons. As the lines between personal and work lives blur, we wish for home furniture that is aesthetic, bespoke and practical. But is that the only reason behind the popularity of the pieces? Nour AlShanti, interior designer, Aati, believes, “Sculpture, in general, is an art that binds three dimensions in every piece. The pieces could be furniture or accessories. Nowadays, the popularity of sculpture furniture has increased as it is the grey area that brings modern geometric designs into life. Especially when people are locked up in houses during pandemic, consumers tend to bring life to their homes by buying furniture pieces that release them from a modern fast lifestyle. It could be accessories like vases or statues that can be hung or placed as an accent piece. It could be a furniture design that is inspired by a hand shape or an animal.”
What makes sculptural furniture popular?
“The influence of social media has made both creating and following trends important because it allows you to be part of something big and makes you feel special. Interior designing also follows trends, just like you determine your style in fashion. Abstract-designed and sculptural furniture is part of these trends. They are extraordinary and make your home special,” says Emir Tumen, founder, Decosouq.
At Royal Furniture, the popular shapes are arches and curves like the ‘palm sofa’, and Richard Snowball, general manager, Royal Group, suggests that the reasons can be attributed to the versatility. “It blends equally well with contemporary and classic furniture, making it a shape that can do no wrong!” He adds, “Traditional furniture used to be boxier and more structured. However, across all industries, we’ve seen love for less rigid shapes. From automobiles to home furniture, it’s all about the curves. It looks better, feels new and is more functional when designing living room setups.” Royal Furniture is a brand that offers a diverse portfolio of high-end furniture designs and has showrooms all across the UAE.
Inspired by organic forms of nature and the human body
Selva’s furniture piece called the Lady Bug armchair consists of a large, welcoming seat, gathered in the soft and enveloping lines of the armrests, which embrace the entire structure, creating a continuous connection between the upper part and the support surface. “The designer Leonardo Dainelli drew inspiration for this armchair from nature by using the shape of a ladybug,” shares Phillipp Selva, founder, Selva, the brand renowned for handmade luxury Italian furniture.
“The curvature of the human body and nature are the most popular inspirations, as the curves bring comfort and softness to the pieces and to our homes. Let’s say, for example, in the ‘hand-shaped chairs’, the hand is chosen as inspiration because it has so many curves, which makes it bespoke yet practical at the same time,” adds Ghaid Marie, interior designer, Aati, a home-grown multi-brand concept that specialises in importing and retailing of premium and contemporary designer furniture.
And the winning shapes are...
“Most of our customers consider their comfort while following trends. For this reason, shapes with functionality come to the forefront along with aesthetics,” says Tumen. From a pre-loved hand-shaped armchair to a lounge chair, Decosouq, an online marketplace for pre-loved furniture and home decorations, has a collection of unique-shaped pieces.
AlShanti adds, “Consumers tend to buy different shapes/ curves to add natural touch to their homes, but it must be comfortable. So, puffy furniture is popular because of that reason. Many brands have designed furniture pieces such as buffs.” It’s visible in many of Aati brands like Ligne Roset, Cavalli, and Fendi. “For example, the Ligne Roset Togo sofa is designed to give the most comfortable lay down of human backbone.” As per Marie, “Tubular and curved furniture is the most trending shape, the reason being that they bring a fine balance between maximalism and minimalism; with the simple curvy designs and uniquely organic shapes and textures such as boucle, boiled wool, canvas, and natural woods that create a sculptural aesthetic.”