The Differences Between Modern and Contemporary Furniture


Modern and contemporary furniture, although often very […]

Modern and contemporary furniture, although often very similar, are not necessarily the same thing. The word modern, in this context, refers to a school of design -- modernism -- as opposed to the time frame in which the furniture was designed or built. Contemporary, on the other hand, refers to a different set of aesthetics, although like modern furniture it also incorporates clean lines and a lack of clutter. Modern and contemporary furniture are both very popular styles right now, and a great deal of what can be seen in high-end boutiques fits into one of these similar schools.

Contemporary furniture can also refer simply to a set of furniture which all fits in the same time frame, no matter what that time frame might be. Furniture styled in the contemporary look generally shares a few common characteristics. For example, it usually incorporates very modern materials in its design, with lots of chrome, metal, and glass. Sharp edges and angles abound in the style, with lines that are a bit asymmetrical to draw more attention to the overall composition. The texture of contemporary furniture tends to be quite smooth, with little to no decorative elements or carving.

There are a number of different contemporary styles, depending on where in the world it originates. For example, Japanese contemporary is a very popular style right now, incorporating the straight lines, low surfaces, and simple design aesthetic of Japanese furniture. American contemporary and European contemporary are two other popular styles, each with their own distinctive lines and look.

As mentioned, modern and contemporary furniture share many stylistic similarities, among them uses of materials and an emphasis on line. Modern Indoor Furniture often incorporates a great deal of materials like plastics, and even molded plywood, as well. The early emphasis of modernism was on function, and over time it became seen as a merging of modern art concepts with those of furniture design.