We want technology to astound us, even if most of that sizzle comes from looks alone. Televisions and smartphones continue to revel in their latest and greatest, but we may have reached a point where the aesthetics can only be pushed so far. Not so in audio, which is like a playground for industrial design. Danish brand Bang & Olufsen reigns this territory, turning out artistic limited editions and lifestyle-centric products that have prevailed as beautifully designed objects that just happen to transmit high-quality sound.
Harmonies is the company’s latest collection to put a high priority on design. A clear response to the current taste for organic and natural interiors, Harmonies is a compilation of sorts: Five of the company’s signature wireless speaker systems remain technically untouched but newly outfitted in an earthy, limited edition shade called Infantry Green. While the impulse to think of camo-style, military-inspired runway looks is not off base, Bang & Olfusen insists this is an ode to nature. Reading the tea leaves, the brand has taped into the current desire for seamless indoor/outdoor living, not to mention our collective fascination with urban gardens and the regular comforts of having greenery inside the house.
Color is as subjective as it gets, and this green is not poppy, zesty, springtime hue. For Harmonies, the company sought a deeper, foliage-like shade to appear on the anodized aluminum surfaces of each speaker. Infantry Green couldn’t be static, as the design team wanted to capture a natural movement of color—from golden and tonal to deep, brown and earth-based as light reflects each surface. “At Bang & Olufsen we continuously absorb trends, process them and make our own distinct interpretations of them. We always strive to create something both new and timeless. In this case, we developed our own tone of green with a monochromathic look through all the different materials, visually tying together the products,” says Kresten Bjørn Krab-Bjerre, Concept Manager at Bang & Olufsen.
Harmonies features a few of the brand’s highly regarded hits—BeoSound 1 and 2, BeoPlay A9 and M5, and BeoSound—with a few design kicks, namely a special fabric speaker cover for BeoPlay A9 and M5 which was woven by Kvadrat, the Danish textile powerhouse. Little else is different—the speakers are equipped with the Bang & Olufsen multi-room functionality, which lets you play music in different rooms of the house, or connect to have one song flow throughout the home—only now, it’s in a more fashionable shade.