Lauded Swiss furniture manufacturer, USM
, has announced a new fall collection to their award-winning modular designs.
Created in 1963, when Swiss engineer Paul Schärer teamed up with architect Fritz Haller to design furniture for his family business's new offices, USM's modernist lines and functionality made it an unexpected darling of Mid-Century design. Now part of the Museum of Modern Art
's permanent collection in New York, USM has evolved into a furniture system of near limitless possibility, equally at home in an office, retail or residential setting. While the term "modular" may evoke images of dorm rooms and a certain ubiquitous Swedish brand, USM is much closer to a Patek Philippe
watch or a Hans Bellmann
chair in terms of aesthetics and construction. The basic element of USM is a chrome-plated brass ball joint, which connects to chromed steal tubes to form the framework of the line. From there, powder-coated metal panels, in a variety of historic and contemporary colors, can easily and quickly be popped in and out to complete the piece. Panels come in a wide selection of sizes, and when you include the various door options and internal organizer configurations, the possibilities with USM become manifold. Indeed, USM enthusiasts (the line is collected with the zeal normally reserved for high fashion or fine art) have created arrangements that form everything from retail clothing displays to Mondrian
-like storage walls by mixing-and-matching color panels. New for fall 2010, USM will introduce a line of autumnal colors including orange, brown and beige, which haven't been available to customers since the 1970s.
(prices start at $500)