We design, manufacture and sell a variety of simple, machine made objects with a minimalist, geometric form. The pieces can be used as stand alone decorative works of art or integrated into custom applications and projects. Simplicity, combined with natural materials and high technology, are the trademarks of HK Designs.
Simple in form, practical in function, quality in workmanship. Products reflective of classic designs.
The Russel Wright Collection
Russel Wright (1904-1976) was one of the most influential American designers of the 20th Century, a true pioneer of mid-century Modern design. Russel designed thousands of objects over his lifetime, which included home furnishings, serving accessories, light fixtures, textiles, appliances, interiors, buildings and landscapes, the most famous being his American Modern dinnerware.
His innovative designs were aimed at an easier and informal way of living. Russel, along with his wife Mary, invented lifestyle marketing and was the first designer of the 20th century to promote his own name on the products.
In the early 1930’s, Russel shifted the nation’s aesthetics towards modernism and revolutionized the way people lived. Inspired by a variety of diverse sources, he created a uniquely American style that was both elegant and informal. His early works in spun aluminum, incorporating new materials and technology, launched his career and crystallized his philosophy of “good design is for everyone”.
Today, his original works are highly prized by collectors and are a part of many museums permanent collections. Dragon Rock and Manitoga, Wright’s extraordinary home and surrounding landscape in Garrison NY, is a National Historic Landmark.
In the early 1900’s, skilled artisans and companies began to experiment with more difficult metals, newer materials, heavier gauges and larger diameters. Russel Wright pioneered the use of spun aluminum in his new line of Stove-to-Tableware products in 1930. Today, spun metal parts are used in a variety of applications and products within the aerospace, architectural, electric power, food service and healthcare industries.
Metal spinning is the method by which a flat metal sheet becomes a three-dimensional object. In its simplest form, the metal spinning process starts with round piece of material, often referred to as a blank, that is attached to a lathe and forced over the spinning tool or mandrel. Pressure is applied to the material via a roller that is worked over the material, stretching it, until it has assumed the shape of the desired object. The inside dimensions of the final piece will match the outside dimensions of the tooling.
As a manufacturing operation, metal spinning is still mostly an art form. Whether the operation is carried out manually, hydraulically, or through sophisticated CNC controls, the techniques involved have been developed through years of trial and errorall under the watchful eye of a highly skilled Master Spinner.
Our standard metal finish is a natural fine grain satin with no clear coat or anodizing and is 100% environmentally friendly. The material will develop a natural patina that will continue to age over time. Environmental conditions, weather, moisture, handling and time are factors in the aging process. The natural pure beauty of the metal is allowed to reflect in each piece, offering an ever-changing visual display as it ages.
The aluminum products can receive an environmentally friendly transparent glaze finish in a variety of colors. Anodizing of aluminum is not recommended due to color variations within the piece, the inability to repair, and the environmentally unfriendly process.
The copper can be turned to an oxidized dark brown or verdigris (green) patina, accelerating the aging process. The appearance can be enhanced with the frequent application of oils and waxes. Solvent based clear lacquer coatings can be used for short-term protection but are not recommended, as tarnishing will eventually appear under the clear coat requiring extensive refinishing.
Care & Maintenance
"The aluminum has a 'scratch brush' finish, (finely engraved circular lines). This finish is easy to clean with steel wool, soap and water, and if the steel wool is rubbed following the direction of the scratch brush lines, the initial luster may be preserved indefinitely- and of course because the metal is solid, and neither plated nor enameled, there is nothing to peel or chip off."
Products can be refinished at the factory for a nominal charge. Please contact the factory for available services and shipping instructions.
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