Bodo Sperlein

Bridging the gap between gallery and retail store

Bodo Sperlein
 

Concept stores have become something of a normality on our high streets today with global brands using them to launch specific new products and collections.


Despite the growing popularity of retail purchases being made at the push of a smartphone button whilst on the train or relaxing in bed, well known e-commerce stores such as Amazon recognise the importance of the physical retail experience. 


Based on a specific theme, concept stores are a unique opportunity for a retailer to attune their content to their audience, providing more of a personal shopping experience. Like a museum will carefully consider the content of exhibitions, concept stores curate their content ensuring that each object, from food to electronics, specifically conveys the character of the store and its audience. Often enough concept stores will showcase products that are exclusive to that city, sometimes even for the entire country.

A number of our tableware collections as well as the Hadron and Contour table are featured in Andreas Murkudis. Based in Berlin, Andreas Murkudis 'guides you through carefully selected collections for men and women’. Advocating for objects that are timeless in aesthetic and preferring quality over quantity, Andreas Murkudis presents traditional products that promote craftsmanship together with collections from emerging designers. By carefully hand picking every piece, since 2003 Andreas has curated a bespoke selection of honest and diverse products. 

With every object possessing its own unique narrative, concept stores allow for a product’s history and its maker’s story to be heard, a notion that becomes somewhat lost in large high street and department stores. With a considered and minimal interior there’s less room for distraction, allowing people to become more engaged in the items they are viewing, much like art pieces displayed in a gallery. 

Here’s some stores to check out

The Stores, Berlin
The Broken Arm, Paris
LN-CC, London
 

 

Craft Story: Wood

Bodo Sperlein
 

Invariably designing with carefully selected materials is at the forefront of our design ethos. Our Contour furniture and TANE silver and wood collection beautifully illustrates the individual grain qualities of Oak and Black Walnut woods.

Inspired by the 18th century Art Nouveau movement whereby Japanese art was prized as a major influence for its simplicity and clean lines, the Contour furniture advocates age-old materials using British fumed oak and American black walnut wood. 

Acclaimed for its exceedingly strong and durable qualities, Oak is a traditional hard wood generally associated with geometric forms. The Contour collection challenges this perception by demonstrating a unique combination of traditional methods of making and modern day technology. By constructing individual wood components, the Contour collection presents an unexpected fluidity to a time-honoured material. 


Prized for its natural resistance to insects and decay, Black Walnut’s unique colour and grain patterns are an exceptional material to design with. It’s unique qualities are strikingly contrasted by the highly reflective properties of silver in our TANE collection.  

 


Did you know An Oak tree can only produce acorns once it has reached 40 years old.

The Oak wood is fumed with ammonia which reacts with the tannin in the Oak, darkening the appearance and revealing the unique pattern of the wood. 

The Contour collection is also available in Black Walnut and Douglas Fir with a Shou-Sugi-Ban finish. 

Shou-Sugi-Ban is the Japanese art of burning timber, literally translating to “burnt cedar board”. Also known as Yakisugi, this particular method of charring has been popular with Japanese carpenters for centuries and has recently gained a resurge in popularity particularly in the west with designers, carpenters and architects.

Originally Japanese cedar wood was used for Shou-Sugi-Ban finishes, today it’s more common for Western Red Cedar and Southern Cypress to be used.  

By burning the surface, a carbon layer is produced that is protective from fire, rot and pests. With an expected life span of 80 years it’s little surprise that Shou-Sugi-Ban is an acclaimed method of cladding for buildings all over the world.

There’s a number of videos on the internet demonstrating the method and results of Shou-Sugi-Ban, here’s a favourite of ours.


Contour Andreas Murkudis

For more information about our contour range and for any bespoke enquiries please contact sales@bodosperlein.com
 

12 Plates of Christmas

Bodo Sperlein

To celebrate the 12 days of Christmas this year, we are taking a look at our favourite restaurants that use our tableware. Follow us on Instagram to see our daily serving!


1. The Square, Phil Howard 

Goldline Plate

www.squarerestaurant.com

 

2. Pied A Terre

White Sculptural Plate

www.pied-a-terre.co.uk

3. The Ledbury

Carrara Plate

www.theledbury.com

4. HKK, Chef Tong

Blossom Bowls

www.hkklondon.com

 5. Manchester House, Aiden Byrne

Black Forrest Plate

www.manchesterhouse.uk.com

6. Yauatcha

Macaroon Plate

www.yauatcha.com

7. Dabbous

White Sculptural Oval Lip Tray

www.dabbous.co.uk

8. Trinity

Blossom Plate

www.trinityrestaurant.co.uk

9. Angler

Black Forrest Plate

www.anglerrestaurant.com

Angler.jpg

10. The Five Fields 

Golden Forrest Plate

www.fivefieldsrestaurant.com

11. Le Champignon Sauvage

White Sculptural Plate

www.lechampignonsauvage.co.uk

12. Sake No Hana

Macaroon Lidded Box

www.sakenohana.com

Craft Story: Silver

Bodo Sperlein

Perhaps it is the primal affinity we have with silver due to it being amongst the first five metals to be discovered, or maybe it’s the highly reflective qualities that have long made silver an opulent material for jewellery and to decorate our homes.

 
 

If a family moved or were displaced during social upheaval, they knew that if they took their silver with them, they could survive.

- Bodo Sperlein, Founder & Creative Director


First mined in Anatolia around 3000 B.C., throughout antiquity silver was a vital resource for the communities in Near East, Crete and Greece.  Between 1500 and 1800, Mexico, Bolivia and Peru accounted for over 85% of the world’s silver production and trade. Known for its antibacterial qualities, it is little surprise that historically silver has been a choice material for drinking and dining vessels. This incredibly versatile material remains to play a significant role in our daily lives, from electronic switches to water filtration and currencies, and even as bearing coatings for joint implants.

With soldering temperatures of 593° to 871°C, great skill and precision is required when working with silver. Turn any piece of silver over and the story of the object in your hand can be told. The hallmark will tell you its geographical origin, the manufacturer and in some cases the individual maker’s mark. 

For more than half a century the Mexican heritage silver brand TANE have designed and produced the highest quality of silver items. Founded in the 1940’s by Russian husband and wife, José and Rosa Vilner fled Paris during WWII and settled in Mexico City. It is here that they opened a leather goods and antiques store. Under the direction of their son, Pedro Leites Vilner, TANE began to acquire a cult destination status from the 1960s onwards. A luxury stop-off for the likes of Jackie Kennedy, Catherine Deneuve, Oscar de la Renta and international royalty, the TANE brand quickly expanded to silver production and established its own dedicated workshops. 


Traditionally an indicator of a household’s wealth and social status, today silver is notably more subtle in our homes. Despite silver experiencing somewhat of a lull in popularity in the last forty years, a growing interest in handcrafted pieces that tell an authentic story has resulted in an upsurge in sales and interest in historical brands like Tiffany and Faberge. Much like our ancestors, we require the silverware that we purchase to hold its value over time. With younger buyers being the most environmentally conscious of generations, the longevity of the materials utilised in the objects we buy are of great significance. 

TANE’s silversmiths train for five years before becoming qualified, a testament to the skill and precision required to work with silver. It is the extensive history and recognition of skill that appealed the most to Bodo when he was approached by TANE to design a silverware collection. Combining the highly reflective qualities of silver with recinto volcanic stone and Mexican dark walnut wood make for a vivid statement piece for any contemporary interior. 

 

 

With Bodo Sperlein’s passion for so-called old fashioned materials, an early project with Swarovski introduced Bodo to working with this historical medium. Our silverware collections for TANE have been designed to challenge the preconceived ideas of silver, bringing an injection of modernity and a ceremonial value to our daily dining.

Shop our TANE silverware 

 
These pieces are contemporary heirlooms, and I would hope that they will be treasured by a new generation interested in longevity and authenticity.
— Bodo Sperlein

Loewe X Telegraph Luxury

StudioBodo Sperlein
 

Our Loewe Bild 9 designs and 10 day pop-up Raum event have been reviewed in The Telegraph Luxury. You can read the full article here

This is indeed a mission - ‘de-geezering’ consumer technology - but considering the fervour and speed at which he has attacked his initial work for Loewe, there is no doubting Sperlein is up for the challenge.
— Jeremy White

WIRED December Feature

StudioBodo Sperlein

Our latest BILD 9 design for Loewe has been featured in WIRED magazine's December issue. The TV and speakers will be available to buy in Spring 2017.

Bodo Sperlein WIRED Magazine
 

"The real draw here is the Bodo Sperlein-designed sculptural stand"

- Chris Haslam, WIRED

Craft Story: Fine Bone China

Bodo Sperlein

Bodo Sperlein has long been an advocate of Bone China, our collections bring a contemporary narrative to a quintessentially British material. From our signature White Sculptural collection handmade to in Stoke-on-Trent to our playful Nikko ranges, our tableware demonstrates the boundless possibilities of Bone China. 

Traditionally Bone China is celebrated for its suitability for decoration. The translucency of its white body allows for a true representation of colour, whether applied through an enamel, glaze or underglaze.

 
 

The clarity and intensity of colour that Bone China offers is demonstrated in a number of our own collections, notably our Cloud and Macaroon collections.


The formula of Bone China as we traditionally understand it was developed by Josiah Spode in 1796.

Recognised as a new variety of porcelain, Bone China is fired from 1200 degrees (c) to as high as 1300 degrees (c). It is this high-firing that demonstrates the strength and durability of this versatile material. 

Known for its speedy casting time, it is little surprise that Bone China became the leading body for English manufacturers. As England gained global recognition as the only country to manufacture this unique form of porcelain, its popularity grew internationally.

Proclaimed for its luxurious qualities, Bone China has long been acknowledged as a superior material for tableware and its global popularity remains.

Bone China, or Fine China as it is more commonly known as nowadays, due to the replacement of bone ash with the mixture of a calcium phosphate and calcium oxide, is recognised for its delicate properties and notably for its historical reputation for tea drinking.

It is the historical narrative of this distinguished material that appealed to Bodo himself when he first established his design studio.

From turn of the century Japanese brand Nikko to European manufacturers such as Dibbern, its unique qualities remain to be a popular choice for chefs, restaurateurs and everyday home dining.

Bone China’s versatile characteristics are also utilised in more experimental firing methods such as Raku as well as being revered by a number of ceramic installation artists.

As Bone China is less plastic than a lot of ceramic bodies, great care has to be taken when it is hand modelled or cast at its malleable greenware stage, and in its leather hard (dried but before its first firing) state. An extremely even heat distribution is required during its bisque (first) firing, if the kiln temperature goes slightly over than the pieces can deform. 

To prevent further movement in the kiln, each individual piece has supports. The beautiful bone china products that have been made over the centuries to date are testament to the meticulous craftsmanship skills and attention to detail of those who work with this material. 

Its translucency is distinctly accentuated in our Nikko Blossom lighting, for more information about this product please contact us directly. 


Credits:

Micheal Donath

The Hadron

Bodo Sperlein
 

The Hadron light is a contemporary interpretation of the graceful designs produced during the Art Nouveau movement. Drawing inspiration from both organic and geometric forms, the Hadron unites angular contours with fluent natural forms. 

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The gradual curvature of the Hadron draws attention to the seamless combination of opaque acrylic with a reflective silver colour or brushed brass finish. With concentrated light cascading and diffusing downwards, highlighting the distinctive characteristics that LED light offers. As the Hadron is dimmable, you control the level of diffused warmth the Hadron displays.

 

Photography by Ana Santl

Having pushed the conventional use of LED light, the Hadron has gone through two years of refinement. The design is a unique exercise in producing an elegant focal piece of sculptural lighting. 

 

Incorporating three uniquely developed interchangeable arms, the Hadron allows you to interact directly with the design, adapting the light to its surroundings. 

The Hadron has a striking presence when both illuminated and turned off, a distinguished centrepiece for any modern or traditional interior. 

 

 

Photography by Matteo Manduzio

Hadron-Journal-1.jpg

Photography by Matteo Manduzio