Monday, September 19, 2016

A maker of miniature midcentury furniture talks all things tiny

Chicago-based designer Michael Yurkovic combines two of Curbed’s favorite things: Midcentury modern furniture, and tiny things. Yurkovic handcrafts 1/12-scale replicas of iconic designs like Charles and Ray Eames’ shell chair and Eero Saarinen’s tulip chair—as well as staged room boxes—that are so detailed and faithful to the original that it’s hard to believe, at least when seen in photographs, that they’re miniature.
Yurkovic, like many children, got his start building model airplanes and cars with his father. This led him to a career in industrial design, where he worked on consumer electronic products like telephones, then a stint in toy consultancy, both of which required a lot of model-making.
Then about two and a half years ago, after having dabbled in midcentury modern furniture restoring and further developing his hand skills, he walked into his first miniature show and noticed that there was an incredible void in the market for midcentury modern design. Everything was Victorian or otherwise traditional. “I didn't quite know exactly how I would do it, but I knew I could,” Yurkovic recalled. “So I walked out of that show and dove straight into miniature, just full time midcentury modeling.” spokes to Yurkovic about his design process, why he thinks people are gaga for everything tiny (and midcentury modern), and how it all might fit within the context of the tiny house movement.
Why were you drawn to midcentury modern design?
I naturally gravitated towards the midcentury modern era because I thought it was all so exciting. There was new technology and new materials and processes, and just a whole new optimistic culture was going on then, bringing a whole fresh perspective to what furniture, as well as other things, could be. The furniture also really made it's way into pop culture in a big way. I like the clean lines, the purity of form. And because it's non decorative and so minimal, usually, the real devil is in the details. There's not all this spare ornamentation, so you can see how an arm is attached to a side of a chair, or the exact curvature of a molded shell. All those things were really carefully considered and that really appealed to me, and I think really challenged designers at the time /.../.

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Thanks for sharing.