The couple behind Midcentury Manila run through their top picks. Their list includes Warren Platner, Gastone Rinaldi, and a couple of Eames—bidding for one of which starts at P900.
Midcentury Manila is established out of the advocacy of showcasing what midcentury modern furniture is. The couple behind this passion project-turned-business, Ken and Isa Mishuku, buys, restores, and sells midcentury modern furniture and shares their acquisitions and collections to a broader audience.
Their goal now is to help people find pieces that are special, tell a story, and reflect their individuality. Each piece has a story to tell, and help bring heritage, history, and a lot of character to their new homes. There are several such lots, from chairs, tables, sofas, stands, lamps, in the upcoming Leon Gallery online auction 19th edition called Leon Exchange XIX—which the couple have pored over ahead of its April start.
Breaking from the mold
The passion of Ken and Isa Mishuku of Mid Century Manila to collect started around 11 years ago when they were building their home. At that time it was common practice to have a space done by an interior designer with furniture specially fabricated to fit.
“We wanted to break away from this mold and put together a home that was unique and personal,” Isa says. “There were very little—almost nowhere—to go back then, so to do this we had to source and went pretty deep into hunting for pieces, eventually leading us to a wonderful world of vintage furniture.”
Here are their top picks from the many lots offered on Leon’s online auction, which runs from April 9 to 11, 2021:
1. B35 Loungers Marcel Breuer
A pair of Vintage Knoll International Bent Tubular Steel B35 Loungers with Aged Leather Seats and wooden arms by Bauhaus Designer Marcel Breuer. It is in vintage Condition with age appropriate patina.
2. Early Knoll Tulip Table
A First Generation Vintage Eero Saarinen Walnut Top Tulip Dining Table for Knoll International from Saarinen’s legendary Pedestal Collection. It is in great Condition considering age.
3. Eames Sofa
The Design for the Eames Sofa began in 1960 but was only completed in 1984. The three-seat Leather sofa (and the two-seat sofa) were the last designs the couple behind the brand worked on before the death of Charles Eames. This is an earlier version with Dark wood back panels, marked Italy as the first Eames Sofas were produced in Herman Miller’s Italian factory.
4. Flos Italy Arco Lamp
Achille Castiglioni was an important italian designer & architect during the midcentury modern era, The massive Arco Lamp was a memorable piece in vintage modernist lighting. This original Flos Italy fixture is complete with sticker markings.
5. Warren Platner Ottoman
1960s Mid Century Modern Iconic Warren Platner Ottoman/Foot Stool. The piece is in good vintage condition with original vintage knoll upholstery. This unit is the model’s Bronze Wire version.
6. Kiva Wing Table
A Vintage Desk from Herman Miller that is no longer produced, the piece has curvy legs that stay out of the way and anchor the Wing table. Its Wings at both ends rotate 90 degrees out from their stored position for a top that handles notebooks or a laptop.
7. MR 20 Armchair
This vintage armchair is designed by Bauhaus Icon Mies Van Der Rohe, and marked Stendig Co. Still with its original caning, some patina on the bent tubular steel frame, but is in good vintage condition.
8. Vintage Eames La Chaise
The Eames La Chaise was inspired by Gaston Lachaise’s Floating Figure sculpture. It was never sold during Charles and Ray’s lifetime as it was too expensive to produce. It was only put into production in the 1990s by Vitra. Initially released in 1991 sympathetic to the original design before changing the design to use polyurethane in 2001.
9. Rinaldi Table
This beautiful dining table by Gastone Rinaldi has a tinted tempered glass top, a lazy susan, and an elaborate chrome base. Also in auction is a set of 6 Rinaldi Cantilevered Chairs with bent steel framework & seat cushions that would match the table.
10. Public Office Sofa
This Herman Miller two-seater Sofa by Yves Behar features a futuristic and modern shape with an airy, ergonomic mesh backrest and cushioned seat.
11. Eames Walnut Stool Type B
Originally designed in 1960 for the Time Life Building Lobby, these are stools are known for their versatility. They work easily as an ottoman, occasional seating, as a side table, and as a plant stand or art pedestal. Bidding for this piece starts at P900.
Leon Exchange XIX is on April 9, 10 and 11, starting at 11AM. Register at LeonExchange.com to bid and view the catalogue. All bids will be online. For more information, call 88562781.