Furniture Design Drawn from Life (Literally)

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Clockwise from top left: the furniture designer Vincent Pocsik's pendant lamps; Pocsik; his coffee table. Credit Charles Bergquist

"The objects in a person's home should be able to stop him or her, even after being there for 10 years," says the furniture designer Vincent Pocsik. At first blush, the brass-detailed walnut tables and stools, hand-blown lamps and small household items comprising his debut collection, Series 001, seem unobtrusive; however, as the Cleveland-bred and Southern California Institute of Architecture-educated Pocsik points out, the important things happen underneath. He likens a coffee table, for instance, to an animal ("its legs are sprawled out and it seems as though it could run away at any second") and notes that the molded leather pouch protruding from its center has an "impregnated feel." "Bringing uncomfortable forms into the domestic space," he says, "is all about bringing people out of their current states."

His pendant lamps are round and smooth on one side, and on the other, asymmetrically cut with folds that reference a clavicle. And, for Pocsik, riffing on anatomical forms and manipulating materials go hand in hand — a carved, laminated wood knife board looks almost fleshy thanks to supple indentations. "I hope that this is as tame as the shapes will be," he says, describing his second series, which is in the works, as bulbous and made from hard substances that appear cushiony. "I want to be provocative, but I also want to be palatable, and I want the pieces to be timeless."

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