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Iconic Australian Design by Neale Whitaker

22 Feb 2021 |  by Neale Whitaker

Iconic Australian Design by Neale Whitaker

There’s probably no need to remind anyone that we are living in uncertain times. Sometimes it feels as if we don’t know how tomorrow will look, let alone next month or next year. For the time being at least, our homes have become our sanctuaries, the one constant in our lives. Home has become - for many of us -both our place of work and our place to unwind. Office, home and hotel. It’s little wonder we’re seeking the quality and comfort of heritage design we can trust.

Enduring Australian Design

In my life as a magazine editor, I was frequently asked to define the nature of Australian design. It’s an elusive quality that isn’t always easy to describe. I believe the Australian style continues to evolve in response to our climate, culture, lifestyle and geography.

As Australians, we’re inspired by international trends, but we have a natural tendency to edit, hone and adapt design to make it relevant to us. We value aesthetics, we value comfort and functionality, but we also value integrity.

Delta III

The King Heritage

The King Heritage campaign is timely in reminding us of the longevity and unchanging values of one of Australia’s most trusted brands. When David King founded the company in 1977, he had a vision to create simple, expertly-made, timeless furniture. 

It started with a steel frame. More than four decades later, those founding principles are still the pillars on which King is based, although innovation in manufacture and technology has allowed King furniture to evolve continuously in terms of comfort, quality and sustainability. 

Timeless design

Classic King sofas like Jasper, Delta and King Cloud have been updated and refined for a new era. The curvaceous Luna chair and elegant Eto range of tables and desks demonstrate the King commitment to working with contemporary Australian designers like Charles Wilson and Tom Fereday.

Luna Outdoor Chair

Luna Outdoor Chair featured in Salt.

As the King national ambassador, I’ve been fascinated to discover Australians’ relationship with the brand. I meet so many people who purchased King furniture in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s, for whom King has become synonymous with their lifestyle. And that’s the beauty of the brand. Your King may look different to my King, but the experience will be shared.

As David King says, ‘From the beginning, we weren't content to just make ordinary furniture. We wanted to design better furniture … when you sit down on King furniture it's almost magical, it's a feeling of weightlessness.'

Delta III

Delta III in Roma Tan.

Inspired by Country

I was recently in the Northern Territory and witnessed the astonishing colours of our natural landscape. It’s impossible not to be inspired by the deep reds of earth and rock, the play of light and shadow on textures and surfaces, the silvery greens and cloudless blue of the sky. Those intense Australian colours have always inspired King – not to mimic them, but to respect them through a palette of elegant and textured neutrals that allows nature to shine.

King furniture works in tandem with our light, our climate and our lifestyle. To me, it provides a trusted backdrop to so many Australian lives. And just as nature has taken millennia to create that vast, unbroken outback landscape, so King acknowledges that ‘simplicity takes time … it takes patience and restraint … to remove the excess and only keep what matters.


Discover the King Difference

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Neale's selection of iconic King designs

1. Delta III

Delta III

Featured: Delta III featured in Roma Tan with optional Monument Coffee Table.

2. Jasper II

Jasper II

Featured: Discover a world of flexibility with Jasper II featured in Nolan Sago.

3. King Cloud III

King Cloud III

Featured: King Cloud III TouchGlide® technology featured in TrueTouch Ghost.

4. Luna Chair

Luna Chair

The Luna Chair designed in collaboration with eminent Australian designer Charles Wilson.

Featured in TrueTouch Mallee.

5. Eto Table

Eto Round Table designed in collaboration with renowned designer Tom Fereday.

Featured in Nero Marquina marble.

6. Eto Desk

The Eto desk featured in Congo seamlessly integrates power, wireless charging and lighting.