Curious Trends


Arty umbrellas

Art inspired accessories are becoming increasingly popular. But umbrellas have also been used as inspiration for art installations from as far and wide as London’s Wapping and Thessalonlki in Greece to Melbourne and Shanghai. A curious thing is that the basic design of the umbrella hasn’t changed much for centuries… or has it?

With increased rainfall worldwide, umbrellas are appreciated more than ever – and have even inspired designers to incorporate them into large scale art installations.

This amazing lighting concept by Steven Haulenbeek utilizes the photographer’s translucent shoot-through umbrellas as modular components to create a light canopy. The accumulation of umbrellas, hung upside down, creates a cloud form.

Another art installation by OzCollective is made from umbrellas connected with cables and is big enough for a person to fit inside

However adventurous the artworks featuring the umbrella, its basic design doesn’t seem to have changed that much over the years. But now The Nubrella see through dome offers the option of an umbrella-cum-helmet, which could transform the lives of umbrella users the world over... hmmm. Or for those who enjoy mopping up the rain as they go, there’s also  Kingston University’s curiously arty duster umbrella.

Nowadays there are a huge variety of colours and art inspired umbrella designs to choose from. Designers have also given creative expression to the umbrella handle, with curiosites such as animal heads,snakes and birds making an appearance on examples shown here, from Italian Manufacturer Pasotti. In keeping with the trend for morbid accessories, skulls are also starting to appear on umbrellas too.

Could this be the new umbrella design we've been waiting for: Dan Gould at PSFK recently featured a rather less flamboyant, but stylishly minimalist and exceedingly useful Non-Drip Umbrella via Yanko Design. The Mohock Smart Umbrella has a handle that also functions as a water-catcher - and doubles up as a hanging hook too.. What a curiously smart idea. Might even catch on - what d'you think?

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