In a hallway to the bathroom of Guillermo Santomà‘s Casa Horta, featuring an Arnold Circus stool by Martino Gamper as seen in The NY Times
Like any cultural artifact that’s worth its salt, there’s plenty more to Martino Gamper’s Arnold Circus Stool than meets the eye. Named after Arnold Circus (circus here being defined as a rounded or oval arena lined with tiers of seats, used for equestrian and other sports and games)– a charming community plot of greenery situated in the heart of Shoreditch, East London, this stool was designed by Martino Gamper as part of a regeneration project for the site back in 2006 and has remained as the circle’s official seating for community events ever since.
Built on the rubble of the old shanties, Arnold Circus is part of the Boundary Estate – London’s first council housing project. Once regarded as the worst slum in London, the Arnold Circus of today paints a very different picture; hosting community events like the circus picnic, brass band concerts, carrom tournaments, flower plantings, music, and film events.
The Martino Gamper Circus Stool as seen in the house of Douglas & Bec on Sight Unseen
Today, the stool can be spotted in the bedrooms, bathrooms, and studios of cool, creative aficionados all over the world and is licensed to be produced locally here in Melbourne in exclusive colours that mirror the Australian landscape. Lucky us!
The ultimate multi-hyphenate of covetable objects (AKA: total Gotta Door, Gotta Gym vibes…) the myriad ways to utilise the Arnold Circus Stool are almost as limitless as the salted pistachios I will likely consume while finishing this very article.
While I snack away, here are 4 *fun* ways to use your Arnold Circus Stool that are totally outside what you might expect.
As a cunning sidekick during a game of The Floor is Lava.
Can you just imagine how chic the orange edition would look mid-game compared to animalistically leaping from chairs, hanging from curtains, and swinging from chandeliers?
As an enormous vase for an even more enormous bouquet of flora.
Do you also feel tempted by the celestial branches of springtime blossom trees in full flight? Dare to host your own Sakura season and flip the stool to reveal the vessel potential of your dreams. Telfast optional.
The vibrant legs of a WFH makeshift desk.
We used to feel rather homicidal towards our office desk; now—as we write from our pyjamas on the couch under a sprinkle of pistachio dust—we simply yearn for it. Stack your stools and order a slab of untreated pine from Bunnings to lay across as a nifty DIY desk. Repurpose it as soon as you get the urge to play Monopoly.
Somewhere to hide all the relics of your failed crafternoon projects. Knitting, embroidery, painting, pottery, floristry, and bread-baking (is that a craft?) have all informed a large swathe of our time-to-be-idle in lockdown over the last 18-months. Pleased to announce we are a master of none of these things, but at least we have a nice place to store the memories.
As seen in HOME NZ June / July 2014
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Lauren Alice McCurry of Ballet Season, a Melbourne-based creative studio building brand essentials for good people.