Thursday, May 05, 2011

Milano: Furniture Fair 2011 - Wallpaper Handmade at Brioni

Wallpaper Handmade at Brioni.   The exhibition, Wallpaper Handmade at Brioni, organized by Wallpaper magazine in the Brioni headquarters is a testimony to the craft, skill, vision and the will to do better that are required to arrive at the remarkable. Wallpaper, acting as client, patron and creative director, have brought together some of the world’s most respected designers, craftsmen, makers and manufacturers to produce a very grand houseful of unique furniture, fittings, foodstuff, fashion and more.

Aston Martin Cygnet – Tom Dixon and Aston Martin.  Aston Martin’s bespoke Cygnet city car is the ultimate urban runaround.  Thanks to the company’s extremely high levels of customization and crafts skills, each Cygnet is a unique stylistic statement tailored precisely to the owner’s requirements.  For Handmade, Aston Martin has worked closely with Tom Dixon, with every inch of the cabin lined and stitched to Dixon’s specifications, and emblazoning the Cygnet’s compact bodywork with the designer’s signature luminous orange.

The editor-in-Chief.   Wallpaper’s Editor-in-Chief Tony Chambers said: “This is a celebration of beautiful new friendships and beautiful new things.”

Street Barbershop - Studio Mumbai Architects and Michael Anastassiades.  The installation combines its creators’ fascination with traditional crafts and materials.  Studio Mumbai Architects and designer Michael Anastassiades share a passion for  ‘the informal architecture of India’.  This and their constant search to define ‘what we understand as design’ has led them to collect a growing archive of ‘fragments of cities’, a large variety of found objects amassed during research trips around the Indian subcontinent.  Based on an impromptu street barbershop in Jaipur, their installation consists of a 1:1 scale model reinterpretation of the scene, transferred to a Milanese context.   The barbershop comprises elements modeled from the teams collected finds.

Flag Bags – Big-Game and Globe Trotter.  Seeking some more fun, Wallpaper charged Switzerland-based design trio Big–Game with creating a space-saving piece of luggage they could proudly roll out during the fashion-week commute.  Working with Globe-Trotter on its iconic vulcanized fibreboard cases, Big-Game devised three strap-on geometrical pockets that can be fastened externally or internally, the bag’s outline against the case forming a tongue-in-cheek representation of a national flag in the process (Japan, Brazil and The Netherlands are in the mix).  These simple leather compartments, each with a half-zip detail, give great on-the-go access to travel documents.

Bike Ride – Cinelli, Rapha + Paul Smith, John Pawson, Max Lamb, Michael Marriott, Nina Tolstrup, Meirion Pritchard.   Wallpaper asked designers to customize Gazette steel track frames from Cinelli bikes and commissioned a special cycling kit from Rapha + Paul Smith.

Above: a detail of the John Pawson designed track frame.

Coloured Pencils and Box – Johanna Grawunder, Prismacolor, and Bonetti Bolgan.   Wallpaper asked Johanna Grawunder to create a set of colored pencils in a suitably fabulous tin.  She chose her favorite artists’ pencils, Prismacolor Soft Core, and designed a stainless steel box with a striped, enameled top.   The tin’s shape is asymmetrical so the colors ‘one should only use a little bit of’ are shorter, then as you use up the pencils the tall refills go in the full-length middle section.

Letter Opener – Hannah Martin.   Contemporary jewellery designer Hannah Martin’s sculptural letter opener for Wallpaper is both modern and unexpected for such a traditional tool, and looks equally stunning on a desk as it does on these bespoke plinths crafted by Dupont Corian.

Office Party Kit – Isolation Unit. Thinking of equipment we would need for our dream office, we were quite certain it should include some disposable kit with which to eat birthday cake.  Japanese design agency Isolation Unit seemed the natural choice for our commission, given Japan’s traditional use of paper technology.  The result is a set of paper tableware, a cup, a deep plate, a low plate and a spoon, that can b e assemble from a flat sheet of A4 paper. 

 In-Flight Meal – Arabeschi di Latte and Bordbar.  Wallpaper approached food design collective Arabeschi di Latte to create our perfect in-flight meal.  As well as determining that the menu needed to comprise simple dishes made out of wholesome ingredients, the collective took the notion of ‘handmade’ very seriously.  It determined that each element of the in-flight meal should identify who had actually made it, by hand.  We found the perfect foil for these handmade meals in Bordbar’s airline trolley, which clients can customize according to their whim.  Needless to say we gave ours the Wallpaper treatment.

Tool Box – WohnGeist, Wallpaper.   It takes a quite a bit to convince Wallpaper to embark on manual work, but when the tools are this beautiful, even they are not averse to a spot of home improvements.  This one-off toolbox made especially for wallpaper took two craftsmen fifteen days to complete.  The box and handles are carved out of Swiss walnut wood, while the chisels are individually made from Swiss steel.


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