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Elle Decor Italia

A journey through the works of OS & OOS, the designer duo who is revolutionizing Dutch design with their bold minimalist works

Oskar Peet and Sophie Mensen’s iconic, essential design in the Matrix, Tunnel and Heliacal collections

Courtesy of OS & OOS

OS & OOS aka OSKAR PEET and SOPHIE MENSEN: a young designer couple with a strikingly iconic production

Si sono entrambi diplomati alla Design Academy di Eindhoven nel 2009 e hanno fondato OS & OOS due anni dopo: stiamo parlando di Oskar Peet e Sophie Mensen, la coppia prodigio del design olandese di ultimissima generazione.

Together they run one among the most multi-purposed studios of the last few years, with works ranging from small objects to very ample spatial concepts, always with a special care for a curious, smart research aiming at finding a balance between form and materials. A kind of research that takes them straight to the object’s essence even when starting from complex projects, which the couple is able to transform into as many linking elements between décor and final fruition. 

Half-Dutch, half Canadian, Oskar; super Dutch Sophie. Together they have managed to create iconic objects taking as their starting point the base concept of rationalizing their pieces – ranging from industrial design to custom-made items – in order to give then a precise, essential purpose. As, for instance, the furniture collection OS & OOS have created basing their work on architectural buildings built from single steel ribs fixed into a grid frame. 

We are talking here of the new Matrix collection, born from the employment of a series of laser-cut steel bands, subsequently assembled into reticular structures. The collection includes seating and lighting items, all of them designed in keeping with a minimalistic, raw-flavored aesthetics. A collection that is able to interact with light, not only because its components, once seen from different perspectives, create the impression of different transparencies, but also because the whole structure projects unusual, geometrical shapes on the adjacent surfaces. It is not by chance that each element has been conceived following modern design’s basic principle according to which the shape of an object should always match its function. 

The collection, suitable for both outdoor and indoor spaces, displays a striking versatility deriving exactly from its manufacturing process: the whole structure functions as a sort of puzzle that is assembled and, only after that, is powder-painted in different colors with a lasting, weather-resistant coating.

A perfect shape, which proves suitable not just for the furnishings, but also for specific, highly functional urban planning solutions.

Besides the Matrix collection, OS & OOS have additionally launched the Tunnel furniture collection, based on the traditional structure used to support the cutting of wood, but employing for each piece a series of aluminum tubes that successfully blend classic and contemporary design. The collection boasts a minimalist aesthetics yet its basic shape is inspired by traditional sawhorses used in Canada to cut fallen trees into smaller pieces, suitable to burn as firewood. 

An ingenious, functional creation that employs a state-of-the-art precision cutting technique. As a result, each piece of the collection has been fixed without using any screws, glue or welding. The decision to employ aluminum was essentially determined by two reasons: first, its extreme resistance and recycling properties, and, secondly – and above all – the fact that aluminum can be anodized and then colored. The Tunnel collection features a color palette ranging from champagne to dark red, from pink to black. 

OS & OOS tested themselves even in the lighting sector with Heliecal, presented at FontanaArte during the last edition of Euroluce at Milan Salone del Mobile. Through this lamp, which was meant as an updated version of the celebrated Pirellone by Gio Ponti, co-founder along Pietro Chiesa of the Milanese lighting brand in 1932, OS & OOS has managed to sculpt a new visual identity by interpreting in a sculptural yet minimalist way the alignment of Sun, Moon and Earth. Tactility is deeply integrated into the piece in that its three circles are equipped with filter disks made to react at the touch of a human hand. The atmospheric lamp was originated by the creation, in 2011, of the Sygyzy lamp, whose name is taken from an astronomical word referring to the alignment of three celestial bodies – each of them eventually transformed, respectively, into the Eclipse, Occultation and Transit lamps, with the blocking of light in the night hours represented by the obscuring of one of the disks. 


by Paola Testoni / 10 January 2018


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