Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec have designed a new television for Samsung, which the French designers claim they approached “like a piece of furniture.”
While this is the duo’s first digital appliance design project, the brothers have worked together as joint partners for about twenty years and currently work from their Paris-based studio. Their work ranges from small utilitarian objects to spatial arrangement and architectural projects, and is defined by the brothers’ distinct personalities and shared notion of diligence. In addition to collaborating with leading design companies, Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec have had their work featured in numerous exhibitions around the world.
Called “Serif”, the Bouroullec brothers’ television features a case that flares out into a base at the bottom and a shelf at the top. The culminating effect is a form that resembles a capital “I” in a serif font when viewed from the side, a truly unique aesthetic for any living space—one that can be likened to a decorative furnishing more so than an appliance.
“One of the challenges was to make the design stronger than the technology itself,” Erwan noted of the design process. “The key value is that Serif sits naturally into any environment, in any place.”
One of the ways the brothers accomplished this was through the addition of the Curtain Mode setting to the user interface. The design-centric feature displays a translucent graphic effect which covers the images on the screen. This enables users to temporarily hide the image without having to completely turn off the TV so that the device can more naturally blend and harmonize into its surroundings.
“Of course design interacts with your day, so design is everywhere. Objects are everywhere,” remarked Ronan. “We tried to give to this technological object a charm and qualities that make you happy to live with.”
In doing so, the Bouroullec brothers, along with their Serif TV, have most certainly redefined the role that technological design plays in our lives, sparking a new way household electronics fit into our living spaces altogether.