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Joris Laarman’s designs illuminate the future with beauty and purpose
02/10/2018

Joris Laarman ambled through the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston looking more like a casual tourist than a celebrated designer — tall, thin and boyish at 38, in short jeans and checkerboard Vans on his feet.

But there it was, his name at the door to the Beck Building’s big downstairs galleries, leading to rooms full of swoon-worthy, already iconic objects produced in the 15 years since Laarman graduated from the Design Academy in Eindhoven, Netherlands.

Most of the objects are high-concept furniture — chairs, tables, lounges and shelves with an organic sensibility so hyper-crafted they look way more expensive than the most expensive goods for sale at Design Within Reach, a store whose prices are not actually within the reach of most people. But the exhibition, “Joris Laarman Lab: Design in the Digital Age,” which was organized several years ago by Holland’s Groninger Museum, also displays the artist’s creations that epitomize his purpose as an artist — make beautiful items that are also functional for real-world purpose.

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