By Naihan Li
Tea Table | The Crates Series, 2014
Black Walnut, Mirror-Finish Stainless Steel
Closed Dimension: 90L × 80W × 50H cm (35.43L × 31.50W × 19.69H in)
Fully Open Dimension: 168L × 77W × 50H cm (66.14L× 30.32W× 19.69H in)
Edition of 12 + 2A.P.
Price Available Upon Request
The newest additions to The CRATES Stainless Steel series includes a Tea Table, an expandable functional piece with concealed muti-purpose sections coming in handy while making Chinese Gong-Fu tea. Each compartment holds certain tools. Naihan combines the profesional Gong-Fu tea table with coffee table perfectly. It just couldn’t get any better than this! Naihan’s mobile creations accommodate a very poetic lifestyle into unique comfort of dwelling by its spatial language.
Naihan’s idea for The CRATES originated from the uncertainty of Beijing’s shifting urban playground, where once discovered, industrial and artist spaces were quickly destroyed.
The inspiration came while unpacking shipping crates full of artwork for Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan. Soon after, those sketches were transformed into an entire series of crated lifestyle products and furniture for the office, kitchen, and bedroom. The CRATES resembles the exterior of a fully-finished shipping container, opening to instantly reveal fully functional household or office environments.
Novelty and detail are the most essential elements in her design. The final products we see now had been improved again and again due to their functional and realistic reasons. Naihan’s design is more than furniture itself. It’s a concept for lifestyle.
She questions the concept of dwelling while accommodating the requirements of a modern and mobile world. “All my creations are designed to improve the life I’m living right now,” says Li. “To do that you need to understand what life is about. It’s a process.”
Naihan continues to experiment, looking to expand her ability to work with materials and create new techniques. She is constantly looking to solve problems and realize designs, as she accumulates more knowledge, hardware, and tools.
The stainless steel and black walnut series of The Crates is commissioned by Gallery ALL. The exhibition runs from May to August, available for viewing in downtown LA’s historic Bradbury Building.