Three men and a woman beside stacked wooden boxes with text on them.

Pinned drones and light sculptures define the future of home accessories

How do drones pinned like an insect collection and lighting in a sculptural context fit into the context of IKEA Art Event? Well, they are both examples of ideas brought to the table when IKEA explores the sweet spot between art and functional objects together with artists and designers from around the world.

For six years, IKEA Art Event has worked with contemporary artists from around the world, highlighting different kinds of art such as glass sculptures, illustrations and handmade rugs. Although the genres and techniques have varied, the ambition has stayed the same – to create art that is accessible to everyone. “I think it is fantastic to have art in your home. And IKEA Art Event is about making this possible for more people. We want art to be accessible and affordable for many different people around the world. Rather than seeing art as an expensive investment for the few, we want to do it our way – make art personal and easy to have at home.” Says Henrik Most, Creative Leader at IKEA of Sweden.

The ambition of making art accessible is also something that sparks engagement among the collaborating artists and designers. Sabine Marcelis, based in the Netherlands, is one of the collaborators. She thinks that art and design has the role of inspiring people and spark curiosity and wonder. “Having access to art is therefore super important. The medium of light, which I work with, does not have to be exclusive, but can be placed in the home and hopefully spark emotions and fill a functional need” says Sabine Marcelis.

Stacked wooden display boxes with text on them, with a box in the centre showing a white drone display.

The theme for the next IKEA Art Event, launching in 2021, is on objects that fuse art and design and that people can relate to and feel emotionally attached to. Sabine Marcelis has started to work on her designs where she is taking on light in a broad sense.  “Normally I approach design through materiality and experimenting with how light and materials interact together. In the collaboration with IKEA I´m investigating how you can shape light through form, which is an interesting new challenge.”

Per Emanuelsson and Bastian Bischoff are the the design duo behind Humans since 1982. They have worked on a prototype for their object in the collection. It´s drones pinned in a display case in a way that mimics a traditional insect collection. “We focus on the symbolic value of drones and their existence. By presenting the drones like this we want to address the uncertainty and how we will be using drones in the future. By pinning the drones like insects we hope to retain the illusion of control”, says Per Emanuelsson.

White models of drones in a white frame hanging inside a wooden box, beside display boxes with black text on them.

Besides Sabine Marcelis and Humans since 1982, IKEA is teaming up with Daniel Arsham, Stefan Marx, Maroussia Rebeqc and Gelchop for Art Event 2021. And with Snarkitecture. Because this time around the IKEA Art Event is going on tour, and together with Snarkitecture IKEA will find a new way to distribute art to the many people.