Friedman Benda sixth annual guest-curated exhibition (515 W 26th St, New York, January 9 – February 15, 2020) is entitled Comfort. Curated by Omar Sosa, creative director and co-founder of Apartamento, the collective exhibition examine comfort versus discomfort and how this dichotomy conditions and drives human behaviour, personal identity and societal norms.Combining utilitarian objects, sculptures, photographs and paintings into a visual landscape meant to provoke engagement from the viewer, Comfort investigates comfort’s relationship to aesthetics and the tension that occurs when an object can be physically comfortable, but visually or psychologically uncomfortable, and vice versa. The exhibition looks at comfort beyond a physical state, but as a complete sensorial experience through the lens of diverse artistic interpretations of “comfort,” such as a John Chamberlain foam Couch, Nicola L’s monumental Canapé Homme Geant, and marks the first time Andrea Branzi’s rare Pigiama Armchair made for Alchimia’s bau.haus I collection will be shown in the US.“We usually talk about comfort as a positive quality,” states Sosa. “It is an object or environment that makes you feel at ease and gives you a sense of intimacy. Comfort is often something that we think is innate but actually it only exists once we experience it. We like to think that our houses are comfortable, we want our environment to be so, but what happens when you venture beyond that familiar zone?”Exhibiting artists and designers include Adaptive Design Association, Michael Anastassiades, Richard Artschwager, BLESS, Andrea Branzi, Fernando and Humberto Campana, John Chamberlain, Nathalie du Pasquier, Simone Fattal, Nancy Grossman, Peter Halley, Kuwata Takuro, Nicola L, Max Lamb, Isamu Noguchi, Gaetano Pesce, Guillermo Santomà, Peter Shire, Ettore Sottsass, Sam Steward, Marin van de Poll, Franz West, Andrea Zittel. From left to right: Peter Shire, Oh My Cats, 2007
John Chamberlain, Couch, c. 1970
Guillermo Santomà, Toilet sink, 2019
About Omar Sosa
Omar Sosa is a Barcelona born New York-based creative director, editor and publisher. In 2008, he co-founded the seminal interiors publication Apartamento, defined by The New York Times as “The burgeoning indie design movement’s official international look book.” In addition of publishing Apartamento, Omar has edited and designed a number of books including Nathalie Du Pasquier: Don’t Take These Drawings Seriously (PowerHouse) and Patricia Urquiola: It’s Time To Make a Book (Rizzoli). Omar Sosa has been the Art Director of Casamica, Corriere de la Sera’s Design Magazine and works as Creative Director for Italian lighting company Flos as well as a consultant for a number of design, lifestyle and real estate companies under Apartamento’s design agency Apartamento Studios.
About Friedman Benda
Since its inception in 2007, Friedman Benda has served as an international platform for the leading voices in design, as well as historically significant estates. The gallery’s roster highlights key narratives that intersect contemporary design, craft, architecture, cutting-edge technological research, visual and conceptual art. Through exhibitions, publications, institutional collaborations, Friedman Benda has played a vital role in the development of the contemporary design market and scholarship.
Courtesy of Friedman Benda
Photography by Daniel Kukla