This spring, Maharam expands its rug offering with two new designs: Swell by the Maharam Design Studio and Semis by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec.
The fifth rug by the Maharam Design Studio, Swell features a unique, undulating surface and exemplifies the studio’s unmatched ability to fuse elevated design with functional, high performance. Referencing Maya Lin’s earth-and-grass sculpture, Storm King Wavefield, Swell is woven domestically on velvet looms. Swell gradually builds from the lowest pile height to the highest achievable in a fluid, wavelike movement that’s simultaneously natural and architectural. High-quality New Zealand wool offers a dry hand and pliant texture along with the durability required for high-traffic applications. Recalling rippling landscapes and bodies of water, the palette for Swell comprises three heathered neutrals and three saturated solids in cobalt, forest, and auburn.
Semis by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec is similarly topographical and was inspired by an aerial view of seedlings in a field. Exploring different pile heights and densities as part of an exercise in tactility, Semis is the result of two years of intensive research and was developed in concert with Kvadrat, Maharam’s Danish partner, with support from our Amsterdam-based rug atelier. Two versions are available—one with small dots, the other with large—in positive and negative iterations of black and white. Taken together, the four rugs graduate from predominantly black to mostly white. Semis's distinctive lozenge shape with its angled corners is highlighted by a pattern of dots that conform to a regular grid in the central section, but becomes more irregular at the top and bottom.
Time consuming to construct, Semis combines handspun Tibetan wool with a fine yet remarkably strong Tibetan knotting technique. To produce a 6.5' wide rug, three Nepali weavers work together, completing up to 2.75" a day. Once knotted, the rug is washed and trimmed with scissors. The intentional irregularity of the cut surface imbues an abstract, geometric design with an organic, handmade feel. For the Bouroullecs, it’s the invitation of variation in the shape of the dots, the trimming, and the number of different weavers contributing to each rug that make Semis successful.
About Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec
Renowned French designers Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec have made a significant impact on the world of design since they began working together in 1997. Their globally acclaimed work includes furniture and product design, interior design, architectural projects, and the development of conceptual objects. The Bouroullec brothers’ work is characterized by its simplicity, originality, and completeness. They focus on achieving balance and finesse in their work and have a relentless commitment to quality. Their clients include Artek, Cappellini, Established & Sons, Flos, HAY, Iitala, Issey Miyake, Kvadrat, Ligne Roset, Magis, Samsung, and Vitra. The Design Museum in London (2002), the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles (2004), the Vitra Design Museum (2012), and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (2012–2013) have all held solo exhibitions of their work. Phaidon published a comprehensive monograph, Works, in 2012.
Introduction: March 2018
Content: 100% Wool
Semis by Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec
Introduction: April 2018
Content: 90% Wool, 10% Cotton