Metropolis Magazine - Metropolis Magazine May 2011


Artek in America

Celebrating its 75th anniversary, Alvar Aalto’s furniture company returns to its roots and prepares to conquer the American market once again.

Waiting for the End of the World

A wealthy financier’s 1978 bomb shelter is the ultimate Cold War relic—and an extreme version of the government-sanctioned “security theater” still prevalent today.

Auto Loan

Stefan Diez borrows car-manufacturing technology for the sheet-metal Chassis chair.

Total Designer

On the occasion of a new retrospective of his work, the legendary Wim Crouwel reflects on his six-decade career.

Joint Venture

Assessing the potential benefits and limitations of a product designer’s ambitious foray into structural invention

The New Piazza

A boldly modern cultural center invigorates an ailing Italian town—and could serve as a model for the entire country.

In the Fold

DESIGNER Alexis Georgacopoulos This July, Alexis Georgacopoulos takes over as director of Ecole Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne (ECAL), one of the world’s premier design schools. (He was formerly the head of its industrial-design department.) Although ECAL students will not, alas, have a presence at this month’s ICFF, in New York, Georgacopoulos himself will. The Brooklyn-based distributor Neo-Utility will be…

Assigned Seating

MANUFACTURER Wilsonart Every year Wilsonart presents an undergraduate class of industrial-design students a simple brief: using laminate (the company’s core product), build an eye-catching yet functional chair that is strong enough to hold 400 pounds. The winner receives a $1,000 scholarship and the type of exposure that comes from having one’s work showcased at New York’s International Contemporary Furniture…