I heart animals…and you will too!Author:Nicole Powell
Making the jump from Academy of Sciences ‘Extreme Mammals’ exhibit to amazing animal-inspired furniture for your home.
I cry in nature films. I heart David Attenborough and I have given serious thought to the question; “if you were an animal…” So you can imagine my excitement about the Academy of Sciences ‘Extreme Mammals’ exhibit.
It’s your classic mammal—but more ‘extreme’ than ever before. While this exhibit might be a little too close to a cabinet of curiosities show or ‘Ripley’s Believe it or Not’ for most peoples taste, it is probably also amazing…especially when you consider its sort of a family reunion—and might leave you regretting last year’s nasty remark about Auntie Marge and ‘that side of the family.’
While browsing some images of the mostly extinct mammals, I kept thinking about how—though these animals had all been very real…very alive—the proportions and characteristics seemed so cartoonish and exaggerated that they could all be out of some Alice in Wonderland fantasy forest.
Take one example: Indricotherium, the largest known land dwelling mammal to have ever lived: It’s big.
Whether or not being really really big is more or less extreme than anything else—It’s pretty awesome, and it’s only the beginning.
It looks like the museum has a whole mess of mammals, that—given your perspective— are all ‘extreme’ or, really, not extreme at all…it’s difficult to judge when your a mostly hairless large brained weirdo walking around on two legs.
So its really not a stretch to understand how even the characteristics of less ‘extreme mammals’ have been directly or indirectly relayed into design, specifically (for this blog at least) furniture design. From some of the oldest furniture ever unearthed to glossy playful pieces you can buy today, animals have a strong track record of making their way into the hearts and homes of Homo sapiens everywhere.
I rounded up some of my favorites here—
Meet Martin-secretaire, the French donkey created by Benoit Convers at Ibride. At 6’7″ Martin has what it takes to keep your home office running…er— perhaps plodding, smooth and steady.
Another life size member of the Equidae family who is certain to light up your life comes from Moooi,
Who would have ever thought a floor lamp could really begin to make up for all those six year old pony fantasies? Accompanying black beauty are a set of adorable and perhaps more approachable rabbit lights, also from Moooi.
I really appreciate how these rabbits are so animated and mischevious looking. Straight out of Mr. McGregor’s garden—these little bunnies bring fun to any interior.
And while the more wild creatures are certainly fun—man’s best friend is holding his own in the furniturepermorphic (please note: I just made that word up) world. Take this gorgeous bench from Oly:
Rover would casually fit into almost any room of the house and could also be an outside dog—making a patio or garden all the more friendly.
I also loved these glossy graphic takes on animal furniture: This whippet bench from Radi Designers looks so fast.
While this red dog stool from Ibride stands ready and attentive:
Also from the world of dogs comes this table. Since kids love dogs and dogs love kids Quentin de Coster has created a playful geometric kids table inspired by kids and good ol’ Canis lupus familiaris.
The dogs may be best in show but nothings says pastoral comfort like a little sheep fluff. This petite kedan footstool, also from Oly is small enough to be understated and totally bizarre enough to become a much loved addition to any family collection.
I hope this is a trend that keeps up! Now….if only these pieces would just walk, crawl or jump into my house the perfect shopping experience would be complete!
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