You may or may not already know their names, but as Guy Allenby explains, Corporate Culture and Living Edge are showing design lovers their softer side
If you thought that some of Europe’s choicest designer furniture and accessories weren’t available in Australia and New Zealand, think again. A couple of key partnerships have been struck in the design trade of late – and the winners are lovers of innovation and classic design.
Hidden away in a quiet back street – just off the narrow and throbbing inner city arterial that is Cleveland Street, Chippendale – is Corporate Culture’s Sydney headquarters. Familiar to architects and interior designers, Corporate Culture has long been the place to source design classics like Arne Jacobsen’s Egg, Swan and Series 7 chairs, Poul Kjćrholm sofas, Hans J Wegner dining chairs, Verner Panton-designed lighting, Robert Dudley Best’s Bestlite… the list goes on.
It’s a collection of pieces with the authentic pedigrees, in other words – from timeless icons to the freshly-minted classic. Chairs, sofas, beds, storage, outdoor furniture, storage, tables, beds and accessories designed for and manufactured by leading brands like Bulo, Carl Hansen + Son, Erik Jorgensen, Extremis, Falinc, Fritz Hansen, Gubi, HAY, Louis Poulsen, Offecct, Verpan and Wogg and many more.
Not that you can actually see, sit on, lie on, hold, caress or open and close everything that Corporate Culture has to offer though (it’ll have to be ordered) because, as the company’s managing director Richard Munao explains, “If we were to have all the objects we would need a 20-storey building.” Corporate Culture are also to be found in Melbourne, Brisbane and New Zealand.
Important to underline too for antipodeans looking to buy an authentic design piece or two for home, is not to let the word “corporate” scare you away because the blurred boundaries between high-end office and residential design is well reflected at Corporate Culture.
After all, the world’s top-drawer offices are now full of “residential” furniture plus Corporate Culture has recently expanded to include the iconic Italian residential brands of Poltrona Frau, Alias, Cassina and Cappellini.
Anyone can walk in and buy.
A couple of kilometres away in Surry Hills meanwhile, the news is that Living Edge now has Established and Sons in their portfolio. Visiting the country in November to announce the initiative were the British company’s directors including Alisdhair Willis (husband to fashion designer Stella McCartney and father to Paul McCartney’s grandchildren).
The partnership between Established & Sons and Living Edge means that designs by Alexander Taylor, BarberOsgerby, Frank, Sam Hecht, Klauser & Carpenter, Wouter Scheublin, Sebastian Wrong and Richard Woods and Shay Alkalay will be available for the first time in Australia.
Established & Sons was launched in 2005 and has already managed to secure a firm following as a brand that explores the boundaries between art and design.
Product photography by Peter Guenzel, Courtesy Established & Sons