Originally created upon Newson's arrival in London in 1987, the Pod of Drawers, together with the Lockheed Lounge of 1986, inaugurated an aesthetic of visual weightlessness and metallic futurism that asserted Newson's prominence at the vanguard of contemporary design. Both designs were conceived as visions that would be sheathed entirely in a seamless surface of aluminium, an impression that Newson would be able to fully realise with the Orgone series of 1993.
Unusually for the work of a youthful designer in the late 1980s, Newson chose to interpret the cabinetry and surface treatments of the French early Art Deco creators, and in particular the work of André Groult. This represents an individualistic point of reference, and it is this synthesis of the Antique with the Modern that infuses Newson's early experimental creations with their individuality. Exhibited at the Paris Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs of 1925, Groult's chiffonier featured a vertical arrangement of slender drawers within an undulating bombé profile, the surfaces applied with a radially-veneered display of luxurious sharkskin panels. Newson redefines the surface using aluminium segments with pronounced rivets, and invests the form with a visual athleticism suggestive of the human body. With the Pod's surface, Newson has mastered the decorative potential of the technique he improvised for the Lockheed and has created a luminescent, bespoke cabinet that acknowledges its precedents in form and technique, yet offers radical departure in terms of material, texture and context.
This Pod of Drawers will be included as "MN - 12PDB - 1987" in the
forthcoming catalogue raisonné of limited editions by Marc Newson,
currently being prepared by Didier Krzentowski of Gallery kreo Paris