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Lilianna Manahan designs from childhood fantasies

(The Philippine Star) - June 21, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - With a vibrant repertoire of designs such as brass chicken bookends, mushroom-shaped minimalist floor lamps, brightly colored stools with indigenous geometric patterns, Lilianna Manahan’s body of work exudes the whimsical charm of her early youth.

Born to TV director Johnny Manahan and surface designer Tats Rejante-Manahan, Lilianna has been creating three-dimensional objects since she was a child. Her artistic talents and passion for shaping forms led her to pursue degrees in industrial design from the Central St. Martins College of Art and Design in London, and the University of the Philippines.

After graduating from college, Manahan moved to Cebu to apprentice with the renowned Cebu-based designer Kenneth Cobonpue and his furniture and accessory design group Hive.

Today, Manahan has made a name for herself as one of the country’s most promising young artists. In 2011, she opened her own design studio, Studio Magee. Named after a childhood nickname given to her by her sister, Studio Magee’s work is inspired by childhood memories, storybook tales, and her travels to many parts of the world.

In her designs, Manahan seeks to create pieces with broad appeal while maintaining her unique flair and individuality as an artist. Her 2012 solo exhibit “Funktion” displayed pieces that embody this balance.

Many of her works also derive inspiration from chosen mediums, including her “Asterix” table lamp, which was made with perforated metal, and her “Fold and Stump” stools, made with the intent of incorporating Ilocos’s traditional Inabel and Binakol fabrics along with industrial materials.

Manahan showcased her designs in the prestigious Maison et Objet Asia in Singapore as one of the chosen Rising Asian Artists.

Immediately following Maison et Objet Asia, Manahan displayed her work as Red Box Home’s Breakout Artist at the 59th Manila FAME held last March. Under the mentorship of Manila FAME creative director Budji Layug, Red Box aids young artists in learning the business side of the industry by matching them with established manufacturers.

BREAKOUT ARTIST BUDJI LAYUG CEBU CENTRAL ST. MARTINS COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN FOLD AND STUMP INABEL AND BINAKOL JOHNNY MANAHAN MANAHAN OBJET ASIA STUDIO MAGEE
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