Stainless Crates by Naihan Li
Updated: Jan 28
Nihan Li always dreamed about having a space in which she could both live and work, but the impermanence of modern Beijing life made it difficult. At any time, her studio might be demolished, a reality faced by many artists in China.
The inspiration came while unpacking shipping crates full of artwork for Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan. Soon after, those sketches were transformed into an entire series of crated. The CRATES resembles the exterior of a fully-finished shipping container, opening to instantly reveal fully functional household or office environments.
By designing furniture that both satisfied her daily requirements and allowed for mobility, she succeeded in creating a studio that she could take with her.
When she moved into her current location in Caochangdi, she extended her ideas as she was faced with new challenges. She found herself inspired by the living space, and her daily life presented an ever-growing array of challenges that became the catalyst for further designs achievements. She gradually added kitchen, bedroom, and leisure elements. The CRATES now include a mobile Bar, an Entertainment Center, and a Kitchen Unit. The house created the demand, and she continues to design solutions to fill those needs, all while having fun.