The KAWS Couch is Genius!
While they might now be hidden away with baby books and photo albums, almost every child had a plush dog, rabbit, or frog that never failed to lull them to sleep or magically end their heartfelt sobbing. Now everyone can have that cushy comfort in their sofas and chairs, thanks to the combined creativity of luminary designer brothers Humberto and Fernanda Campana and star artist KAWS, a.k.a Brian Donnelly.
Marc Benda, founder of the gallery where the new pieces are currently being displayed, explained that the collaboration was easy and natural. As he tells it, KAWS was already a fan of the Campana brothers and even owned a few of their pieces, including an inimitable Bolatas chair and an inviting couch constructed from leather teddy bears. KAWS was also aware of their other furniture created from stuffed lions, alligators, tigers, sharks, and pandas. He wanted to fuse their plush furniture with his own toys, resulting in the limited-edition KAWSxCampana collection that exists today.
The setting for the exhibit at Friedman Benda was created by Lelia Arruda, the gallery’s in-house exhibition designer. The booth was lined with petal-pink wallpaper and interspersed with images of KAWS’ signature creatures, each of them complete with crossed-out eyes and round noses. Within, a pink chair, black chair, and pink sofa were perched on round, elevated stands. The wall behind these pieces displayed two oversized plush Xs sewn together to mimic the “hides” of assorted KAWS creations. Curious eyes widened as they absorbed the odd pairing of child-like hues and an overall sense eerie morbidity. Still, the combination felt kind of perfect, and the three pieces sold almost instantly. Benda wouldn’t say who bought the pieces or whether they were bigger fans of KAWS or the Campana brothers, but he did assure everyone that the art would be going to some “pretty amazing homes.”