Virgil Abloh, Louis Vuitton’s artistic director of menswear and founder of Off-White, has joined forces with flat-pick giant Ikea as part of their fifth iteration of Art Event 2019, a limited collection of eight rugs that merges art, design, fashion and street culture with the traditional skill of weaving.
Intended to create artworks in textile form, each rug is created by a different leading creative from around the world, including Japanese artist Misaki Kawai, French artist SupaKitch, American artistic duo CHIAOZZA and London designer Craig Green, as well as Virgil Abloh.
Take a peek at the collection below and where the inspiration for each rug came from.
PE 731226 by Virgil Abloh for Ikea Art Event 2019, €400
Intended as a play between the living room as a space to be lived in and the traditional thought that some pieces of furniture were “too good”, Virgil uses a Persian rug design with a request to "keep off" it. “The parental ‘don’t ruin the furniture’ kind of thing I think has really impacted how younger people think,” says Virgil.
PE 710575 by CHIAOZZA for Ikea Art Event 2019, €350
Taking inspiration from the deserts of the American southwest. Adam Frezza and Terri Chiao wanted to evoke travel and adventure with their design. “The colour blocks, squiggles, daubs and dots of this rug invite people of all ages to sprawl out, daydream and get lost discovering little moments of play and tactility.”
PE 710581 by Craig Green for Ikea Art Event 2019, €180
This bright and colourful creation of two birds of paradise was all about bringing the tropical into the domestic for Craig Green. He wanted to explore the idea of “escaping reality”, to create a “portal” that transports you somewhere else.
PE 710578 by Misaki Kawai for Ikea Art Event 2019, €300
Misaki Kawai admits to being inspired by the “goofy stuff”. She also wanted her design to be “hairy”, creating a series of depths and different textures throughout her design. The idea? To encourage you to “go ahead, please pet the big cats!”
PE 710572 by Seulgi Lee for Ikea Art Event 2019, €300
This creation by Korean-French artist Suelgi Lee focuses on water – its colours and reflections. “I wanted to bring the light of water inside. I thought of northern Indian artisans, the city Ayodhya, ancient Korean Queen Heo Hwang-ok and, above all, the power of colours,” she explains.
PE 710569 by Noah Lyon for Ikea Art Event 2019, €300
If Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary artist Noah Lyon’s rug reminds you of a cartoon rumble, it should. “This rug depicts the whirlwind of interconnected life as our world tumbles,” he explains.
PE 710565 by Filip Pagowski for Ikea Art Event 2019, €150
Polish graphic artist Filip Pagowski considered a rug’s actual making as part of his design. “The idea behind the design was the notion of weaving,” he says, “with the image reflecting the mechanics of using yarn to build a rug.”
PE7100584 by Supakitch for Ikea Art Event 2019, €350
French artist Supakitch is influenced by rhythm, tattoos and Asian manga and these are drawn out in his snake design. using the classic animal hide rug as his starting point, he opted to give it a fresh take with a slithering snake. “As a totem animal, the snake is a spiritual guide that heals,”he says. “Snakes shed their skin and symbolise rebirth.”
The rugs will be arriving in-store and online throughout May but only in small numbers, so keep an eye on the website or sign up here to register your interest.