IDSwest: FRAME Magazine Booth

IDSwest: FRAME Magazine Booth

What do string art and FRAME magazine have in common?

Well, string art, though an artistic fad of the 70s, can also be modern and graphic. And that is what you’ll find on the pages of FRAME magazine. Creative, edgy spaces featuring astounding architecture that is punctuated with dynamic art and the coolest of cool products.

Here’s a look at FRAME magazine’s booth in the stages of set up at IDSwest this past weekend. (View a short video of set up)

With 2 days and the clock ticking, all the turquoise yarn was strung, and the booth fully installed. Did you notice the ceiling?

Great design is intentional, and as random as the turquoise yarn might seem, it is anything but. There is a deliberate attention to detail in the planning behind this booth, and every feature has a purpose. Did you notice the white frames? The translucent counter ‘framed’ in contrasting wood?

In speaking with Erik Bean, co-partner with Stefan Levasseur in the new firm Design&, he explains the ‘whys’ behind the booth design…

The turquoise yarn was chosen because of its brightness and contrast with the white walls and white frames.  The yarn’s chaos allows for the simple geometry of the counter and frames to break away and highlight their content — FRAME!  Much the same way the magazine is able to edit down and highlight only the best design from a sometimes overwhelming interior design discourse. 

Here is a look at the FRAME magazine booth on completion.

(L to R: Stefan Levasseur, Erik Bean, co-partners in Design&)

Now that you know the strategy behind the design can you see it? Take another look. See how the white frames and the counter pop to the eye? You can’t help but notice them and that which they are each framing… the magazine, FRAME! I wish I had captured the wall on the left, because it was really amazing too.

I love the subliminal strategies at play… you know it’s there, yet without consciously being aware… seeing without seeing.

Another thing I learned is this booth was built on a $500 budget. Can you believe that? And what really resonated with me was the fact that the team had to be resourceful. They had to find innovative and inexpensive ways to create the effects they wanted. One example of this is the white frames. They were repurposed from thrift shops, and then given shadow boxes. Can you see the shadow boxes in behind the white frames?

Oh, and did you notice the E on FRAME is backwards? Can you guess why that might be?

So what do you think?

Isn’t it amazing when you learn the concept behind the design? It completely changes the way you see things. Great design such as this is always effective even without an explanation. But once you know the thought that’s gone into the design, it makes it that much more interesting.

Credit for this booth is shared by Erik Bean and Stefan Levasseur with the other collaborators and young designers on the project:  Jeremy Calhoun, Max Hsu, Sanghyun Samuel Kim, Lucy Liu, Sophia Sengsuriya, and Amy Sissons.

And a special thank you to Erik Bean for providing me with this behind-the-scenes information that made this article possible.

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