Operæ reached its eighth edition. The independent design fair in Turin, Italy, gathered designers, makers, institutions, galleries and the public. This year’s event has filled the huge spaces of the Lingotto Fiere exhibition centre. It has been curated by Alice Stori Liechtenstein who has identified the general theme Why Design as the interpretative lens to read the works on display. We have chosen seven projects from the section Design Galleries and Independent Designers, as well as from the Piemonte Handmade special section, in which local artisans, galleries and designers team up to develop a common projects.
Presented by Mamarocket, Foro Studio worked on an installation about design and love. Eight seats divided into four couples narrate the love affair in a public context, one which often forgets about the relationships between its inhabitants. Liaison wants to fix this split by changing the shape of the traditional bench. The installation speaks to a couple far from the norm, trying to make diversity its strength: Liaison shows us mixed or agée couples, lovers of different religious beliefs…
Serena Confalonieri designs three amulets that talk about love through the use of black magic symbolism. A long-standing tradition in Creole cultures, black magic spells are commonly used to banish love rivals and weaken an unbreakable love bond with someone. These objects are built on sharp geometries aimed at revisiting voodoo dolls and ritual effigies from an abstract perspective. Both materials and techniques (glass fusion and metallic elements) embodies the different levels of strength of love ties.
Domestic cutlery has Medieval origins. Knives and forks were similar to weapons or working tools. The artisanal collection by Andrea Branzi, in collaboration with Coltelleria Collini and Galleria Luisa delle Piane, wants to get back to the brutality of this primordial objects, that have become fancy ceremonial tools for meals, loosing completely their primal taste.
Part of the pleasure of collecting is the displaying of the coveted objects: unusual and antique trinkets fill mesmerising cabinets of curiosities. This was Zanellato/Bortotto’s starting point. Wood and glass cabinets are rather canonical objects, with regular rectangular structures. The designers decided to remove the frames, deconstructed the traditional shapes, and play with coloured glasses. The result are bright caskets, of irregular geometric shapes, where the milky translucence of the glass, worked with maestria way Chiara Ferraris, gives light to the objects inside, just like the stained glass of a cathedral.
Maniera invited Italian architecture firm piovenefabi to work with the brothers Silvio and Ambrosio Versino specialized in the extraction and processing of Luserna, a dense metamorphic stone typical of Val di Susa. Light Conversation Pieces is a series of small monolithic stools and coffee tables made of ‘gneiss’. The combination of a rough top and smooth sides reveals the degree of compression and makes the stratification of the stone visible.
Conceived by Studio La Cube for the Camp Design Gallery in Milan, the Compositions project is composed by a series of objects made following the idea of creating powerful aesthetical contrasts with the color and the textures of the materials as well as doing a balanced general figure. Using the roughness of the black wood with the elegance of the brass, copper and aluminium sheets, we have created four different compositions in where to experiment with the possibilities of the geometry and with its small details, such as the fitting of the different pieces and the role of the screws on the aesthetics’ object.
Arthur Hoffner tries to play with the fine line between the gadget and the magical artefact, and drew these objects from the primal relation between man and the waterfall. They are made with assembled utensils that carry, convey, or retain water nowadays. By redefining the components and materials of these fountains, I attempt to incorporate these places of negotiation between liquid and solid states in the domestic landscape.