The Non Conformist Carbon Collection – Text by Tara Meeran.
In keeping with Okha’s enquiring design philosophy, the Carbon Collection comprises six objects which challenge preconceptions of structure, beauty and imagined realities: Black Rain, High Voltage, Law & Disorder, Mondo, Rock Sculpture & Omega. These six designs bring into question aesthetic conformity and the presupposed need for order and equi-balance. Contrary to the accepted norms of balance and symmetry, these designs revel in asymmetry and a non-conformist provocation where form is unpredictable, non-uniform and beauty a multi-lingual dialogue between mind and heart.
The elegant Mondo Coffee table is a paradoxical puzzle. The seemingly discordant composition of vertical and horizontal wafer-thin steel profiles fuse together to create two perfectly concentric and symmetrical squares. The vertical supports are diametrically opposed only visually revealing one pair of supports at a time. It is balance and imbalance, random and systematic.
Chantel Woodman’s Rock Sculptures are pure sculptural works which reiterate the randomisation (or perhaps intuitive) arrangement of the facet evident throughout the collection. Rock Sculptures evoke fossilised crystal formations, they remind us of the structural order and disorder embedded in nature.
Similarly, each new perspective of Law and Disorder reveals unexpected proportional and compositional changes. When viewed from above the 3 stainless steel legs and drum-shaped shade form a balanced and harmonious encircled triangle with a likeness to the universal modelling structures of fractals and elements in perfect orbit. In profile Law and Disorder surprises and confuses as the three vertical flanges of the base jut out at seemingly disproportionate and irregular angles.
High Voltage replicates the form of a pylon, its perforated lamp shade texturing and filtering light. Powder coated steel bars run diagonally and form supportive beams. As one moves around the lamp, a second set of bars becomes visible, cross etching the first. As with all the designs in the Carbon Collection, black is the chosen colour, the emphasis being on pure form, graphic expressionism and absolute values.
Possibly the most profound work in the Carbon Collection is Black Rain. A mirror quite unlike any other, multifaceted recessed and extended shafts of mirror replicate sculpted and shifting tectonic plates and evoke shafts of harsh winter BLACK RAIN. Nothing is static, everything is in a state of flux, shifting, sometimes imperceptibly, sometimes cataclysmically and in life as with the Carbon Collection our perceptions depend upon the angle from which we are viewing from.
The sixth element in the Carbon Collection is the Omega V console. Vertical lines carved into a carbon black finish reference a mantra of meditative minimalism. The solid oak timber frame and stepped solid brass legs pay homage to the architectural inspiration of Art Deco.