6sqft’s series “Where I Work” takes us into the studios, offices, and off-beat workspaces of New Yorkers across the city. In this installment, we’re touring the South Bronx design studio of Sebastian Errazuriz. Want to see your business featured here? Get in touch!
Sebastian Errazuriz is a Chilean-born artist, designer, and activist but over the years, he’s grown his multidisciplinary studio to incorporate everything from virtual reality to activism. But nothing he does is cookie-cutter. His cabinets undulate and mimic kaleidoscopes; his public art makes social commentary on issues from Wall Street and capitalism to Chile’s politicide; and he’s created sculptures that mix a boat with a coffin and a crystal chandelier with taxidermy birds. Sebastian likens his ability to work in these mediums separately but together to how he can speak both English and Spanish but also Spanglish. “It’s the freedom to incorporate words that do not exist in one particular language but that enrich communication with someone else that I really enjoy within the boundaries of art and design,” he explains.
Now, Sebastian is at the forefront of yet another new frontier. Though he has a 5,000-square-foot space at the uber-hip Industry City, he opened his second location last summer in Mott Haven, one of the city’s newest artist enclaves due to its affordable warehouse spaces and non-residential nature that sets it apart from the more gentrifying parts of the area. 6sqft recently paid Sebastian a visit here to learn how his firm is growing, the process behind his “functional art,” and why he moved to the South Bronx.
Tour the studio and meet Sebastian
If you read 6sqft regularly, you probably know by now that we can’t get enough of New York designer Sebastian Errazuriz‘s industrial designs. We’ve previously featured his quirky, spiky-skinned chest, a giant golden cow piñata on show in Sunset Park, and more recently, his yawning video installation looping in Times Square. If you haven’t tired of him yet, get ready for another of his fantastical creations: Mahogani Explosion, a seemingly boring wooden chest that “explodes” to the sides as it’s opened.
Learn more about this explosive cabinet
“The Space Between the Void (Kaleidoscope Cabinet)” is yet another attempt by New Yorker Sebastian Errazuriz to deconstruct the paradigm that a cabinet should simply be a box with two doors. 6sqft previously featured his Wave Cabinet and his Magistral Chest, but the psychedelic design of his latest creation deserves a special mention of its own. The Kaleidoscope Cabinet consists of a reflective storage unit that visually multiplies whatever is placed inside it, and it even has a peephole that functions just like its namesake children’s toy.
Learn more about this mind-bending cabinet
Sebastian Errazuriz is one of the most diverse designers around. Not only does he create quirky, functional furniture like this spiky-skinned chest, but he also comes up with unique public art works such as last year’s giant golden cow piñata and the more recent yawning video installation in Times Square. His most recent thought-provoker is the Wave Cabinet, a furniture piece that opens and closes in one fluid motion. Made from lacquered baltic birch, steel, and glass, the “functional sculpture” can open in various movements thanks to 100 linked slats, each of which pulls on the following one like a paper fan.
Watch a video of the cabinet in action
Chilean-born, New York-based artist, designer, and activist Sebastian Errazuriz isn’t happy simply designing nice things to please the eye. Through his work, the internationally acclaimed creator wants to provoke some thoughts and make exceptional pieces, tackling everything from political artworks to experimental furniture. Just take a look (but do you dare to touch?) at his Magistral Chest, a porcupine-like chest of drawers that can hide and protect your most valuable treasures inside its spiky shell.
Learn more about this spiky chest of drawers
And not out of boredom. Sebastian Errazuriz has created a new public art piece for Times Square that is the antithesis of the high-energy, fast-paced neighborhood. It’s a close-up, black-and-white, three-minute video of the artist looking around and yawning that plays on 50 digital billboards throughout Times Square, which triggers a domino effect of sleepy, open mouthed gaping, since we all know yawns are contagious.
Errazuriz’s idea was to instill “a pause in the city that never goes to sleep,” which informs the title of the work. The yawn-athon takes place every night through January 17th at 11:47pm from 42nd to 47th Streets between Broadway and 7th Avenue.
More (yawn) details ahead
Undeniably, there is much symbolism attached to artist designer Sebastian Errazuriz’s giant golden cow piñata on display in Industry City in conjunction with NYCxDESIGN, New York City’s official citywide celebration of – you guessed it – design.
One look at the suspended shimmering beast and you’re likely to be reminded of the infamous golden calf Bible story about idolatry (Exodus 32:1–6, if you’re interested) or notice its uncanny resemblance to Wall Street’s iconic charging bull.
See more of this oversized golden pinata