Commune Cofounder Transforms His Paintings into Artful Rugs

Five small-scale paintings Commune cofounder Steven Johanknecht made at home during the pandemic lockdown sparked a wave of new products for his studio, includ­ing tile and rugs. To create the latter, his individual canvases were repositioned and repeated, making patterns that pay homage to mid-century Swedish and Scandi carpets (the L.A.–based designer is of Swedish descent).

Traditional rugs from the region are mostly flatwoven Rollakans or shaggy Ryas, but the Abstrakt collection is produced with a luxurious 4-mm handknotted pile height. In visual contrast to the series’s colorful geometries, the rugs were lovingly photographed in spare surrounds, namely Wright Ranch in Malibu Hills, an incomplete brutalist structure designed by Eric Lloyd Wright (grandson of Frank), made of concrete tinted to match the local terrain.

a pink rug with red and green geometric shapes lies next to a blue rug of the same pattern
a blue rug with red and green geometric shapes
a gray rug with yellow and green geometric shapes

read more

recent stories