Soft Brutalism

This ‘Brutus’ dining chair is designed by a brand that’s new to the Tollgård showroom, BassamFellows. Founded in 2003 by Craig Bassam and Scott Fellows, the studio is based in New Canaan, Connecticut – a mecca for the mid-century-modern design movement – in a restored Philip Glass-designed building. Being surrounded by modernist design, BassamFellows unsurprisingly has a portfolio that often takes this influential era as a starting point for its work: it describes its aesthetic as “craftsman modern”.

Introducing the new collection as part of Focus/20’s online programme, Staffan Tollgård says that ‘Brutus’ “has the qualities of a Jerenneret brutalist chair, but they’ve taken it and softened it – instead of square pieces of wood, they’ve rounded it, then sanded and polished it to the point where you almost have to go and touch it. It’s got this wonderful sensual shape, and for a chair that started with a brutalist idea, that’s kind of special.”

BassamFellows’ products also often blend industrial features with the handmade: look out for its new ‘Geometric’ dining table, whose base of radiating tubular steel components is cinched together with wrapped leather.

Tollgård, First Floor, Centre Dome