Category Archives: Interior design projects

Foscarini Supports Art and Culture at la Biennale di Venezia 2013

Posted on June 5, 2013 by Megan

For the sixth year running, Foscarini is sponsor of the International Art Exhibition and the International Architecture Exhibition of la Biennale di Venezia, confirming the company’s affinity for and proximity to the world of creativity and art and to contemporary languages. Research, innovation, product culture and experimentation are the founding values of the Foscarini philosophy, addressing a multifarious public, through innovative forms and channels, with  initiatives linked to interdisciplinary fields.

Foscarini at Venice Biennale – Arsenale

This vision is expressed to the full in the company’s presence in Venice, where Foscarini lamps offer a contemporary reinterpretation of the historic venues of la Biennale di Venezia. Light installations with an unmistakable presence and a strong evocative effect, disseminated across the Arsenale and the Giardini, confirm Foscarini’s ability to put together sceneries, create atmospheres and arouse emotions even in contexts and settings of significant sizes.

On the occasion of the 55th International Art Exhibition – la Biennale di Venezia, the second floor of the Arsenale bookshop houses the Foscarini relaxation area with an original photo exhibition. Twelve large canvases reproduce the pictures commissioned by Foscarini from world-famous photographers for INVENTARIO magazine, an independent publishing project – promoted and supported by Foscarini – which relies on original critical contributions to shed an enlightened and free light on the design, architecture and art scene. Massimo Gardone, Max Rommel, Moreno Gentili, Lena Amuat, Emmanuel Mathez, Gionata Xerra have imagined and set up lots of different sets, each time starring one of the models in the Foscarini collection. The result is a gallery of original portraits, where the lamps enjoy an entirely unprecedented dimension, which is both symbolic and unexpected.

The bond between Foscarini and the art world is part of a far-reaching vision, which this year takes concrete form in the opening of the Foscarini Spazio Brera in Milan and the Foscarini Spazio Soho in New York.

Foscarini at Biennale – Arsenale Bookshop

These spaces are not mere showrooms, but rather places which are open to creativity, designed to tell stories and convey emotions, which will continually house site-specific installations devised by artists and exponents from the international creativity scene. Such as Attilio Stocchi, who for the opening of the Space in Milan devised his work entitled SEME/SEED, and Stefano Arienti, who prepared an unprecedented installation for the Space in New York focusing on the theme which is dear to him, namely “Algae”.


A Passion for Jean Prouvé

Posted on April 12, 2013 by Megan

The Pinacoteca Giovanni e Marella Agnelli presents A Passion for Jean Prouvé, an exhibition devoted to the furniture and architecture by the French designer Jean Prouvé from the collection owned by Laurence and Patrick Seguin.

Laurence and Patrick Seguin discovered the work of Jean Prouvé in the late 1980s through his furniture designs. They were immediately struck by the unique aesthetic of these pieces, where the artistic skill lies wholly in imperceptible technical mastery devoted to enhancing the strength of the materials. While at the time very few people had even heard of Jean Prouvé, their enthusiasm for his captivating lines was immediate, a revelation that became a true passion.

Metropole aluminium house, 26.2 x 40 ft ca. 1949, provenance: France

The couple then began to take an interest in Jean Prouvé’s work as a whole, of which the furniture is only a part, going on to discover his architectural designs. With the idea that ‘there is no difference between constructing a piece of furniture and constructing a building’, he applied the same design approach to both fields, basing all of his work on it.

From the opening of their gallery in Paris in 1989, Laurence and Patrick Seguin began to work in earnest promoting the creations of Jean Prouvé, with the result that the most important international collectors and the most prestigious museums now have works by the French architect and designer in their collections. Indeed today he is held to be one of the key exponents of twentieth century design.

Metropole aluminium house, 26.2 x 40 ft ca. 1949, provenance: France

Laurence and Patrick Seguin are now presenting a number of works from their private collection for the first time: around 40 pieces by Jean Prouvé, most of which are prototypes or extremely rare, from the armchair designed for the University dormitory of Nancy in 1932 to the light armchair created for the University of Antony in 1954, to the furniture produced for Africa.

The Laurence and Patrick Seguin collection

The same principles of functionality and rational fabrication that the designer applied to furniture often destined for the public sector, can also be found in Prouvé’s architectural designs: the same solid structures feature clever mechanisms for assembly and organisation that enable both the furniture and the constructions to be easily moved, disassembled and modified.

The Maison Metropole (8×12 meters) an aluminium construction won in 1949 a Ministry of Education competition for ‘mass-producible rural school with classroom and teacher accommodation’: a masterpiece of nomadic housing, followed the portico principle patented by Prouvé in 1939. The Ateliers Jean Prouvé built two of them, one in Bouqueval, near Paris, and the other in Vantoux in Moselle. This one has been mounted for the first time on the Lingotto track in Turin. Taking four people three consecutive days to assemble, a stop-motion film has been made of the construction process, with video footage streamed on the Pinacoteca website.

Metropole aluminium house, 26.2 x 40 ft ca. 1949, provenance: France

The Laurence et Patrick Seguin collection includes contemporary art that coexist at their home with Jean Prouvé furniture. Some have a liason with Jean Prouvé, as the mobile made by Alexander Calder for Prouvé; and the one by Richard Prince, who has made especially for them an artwork out of a Jean Prouvé table.

They decide to show these works at the Pinacoteca Agnelli together with the ones by Jean-Michel Basquiat, Adam Mcewen and Marc Grotjhan. The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue in Italian and English published by the Pinacoteca Agnelli.

Glittering bottles from Cumbria Crystal

Posted on March 15, 2013 by Sian

Cumbria Crystal, one of few remaining producers of hand-blown and hand-cut full lead English crystal, launched Bottles in January 2013, a chic collection of full lead cut crystal bottles produced by skilled craftsmen in the Lake District. Launched following the success of Cumbria Crystal’s Six Stemware and Six Gift collections, Bottles is a mix of 6 contemporary glass designs matched to make one unique collection. Cumbria Crystal will be vying for WIN’s Interior Accessories Award in this year’s extensive awards programme.

The intricate craftsmanship used means that to make a single piece, there are 6 individual processes, each step completed by a highly skilled craftsman/woman. From blowing to cutting, every step is done by hand, creating a glass of superb clarity and artisan finish. Designer Katy Holford explains her inspiration for the collection: “The bottles are a witty reworking of the kitsch chianti bottle candle holder. A nostalgic nod to the 70’s and 80’s when as students we glammed up a cheap meal with red wine and candles.”

The design proportions of bottle and candle are elegant and reworking it in luxury crystal turns a cliché into something sophisticated and refined. Cut crystal sometimes has fusty connotations. The aim of this collection is to give the medium a fresh contemporary approach that suits today’s interiors. It’s all about reinvention, turning an everyday bottle into something extraordinary and exquisite. Bottles, available from retailers Heals and Liberty, comes in 2 shapes, Bordeaux and Burgundy, in 6 different designs and each bottle includes an elegant hand-made pewter candle cup to prevent candle wax spoiling the sparkle of the crystal. Each Bottle is 31cm in height, 9cm in diameter and also serves as a wine carafe holding 750ml capacity.

Katy Holford who is reinventing cut crystal for 21st century living with contemporary and innovative designs has an impressive design background and is passionate about retaining traditional crafts skills within Britain, ensuring they are passed to future generations. The Company remains small and true to its artisan roots, employing 17 people at its factory in The Lake District where visitors can watch craftsmen/women producing crystal in the time honoured way.

Cumbria Crystal supplies all Commonwealth embassies with crystal to grace formal dinners, as well as supplying glasses for ITV’s Downton Abbey and hand crafting the light bulbs for international designer Lee Broom. Katy designs bespoke glassware for renowned retailers Harrods and Thomas Goode, as well as exclusive commissions for furniture designer and nephew to HRH Queen Elizabeth, David Linley.

Interior Accessories get colourful

Posted on January 29, 2013 by Megan

Wash away those January blues with an infusion of colourful and cosy products launched for 2013. Sustainable French designer, Sabatina Leccia makes brightly coloured glassware from recycled materials out of her studio in Paris.

Sabatina Leccia

Designer Hannah Niskanen has created a practical and intriguing storage system in her “Safety Vase”. The hallway and bedside tables combine a cashmere and merino hand-knitted orb, framed by a solid walnut top and hand turned legs.

This safe hideaway is for those treasures that have a tendency to be misplaced has been created. The vase like form invites the user to touch and feel the softness of the wool whilst playfully hiding objects away, this furniture series is about experiencing the knit. It poses the question of why cant the first thing you touch when you wake up in the morning or come in from work be soft and comforting.

Safety Vase by Hannah Niskanen

And finally, check out these peculiar ornaments from London based ceramic artist, Myung Nam An.
Myung’s sculptures tell stories using symbols which are universal. These incredibly intricate ceramics are beautiful and bright, a perfect visual pick me up on a cold winter’s day!

“Eye Series” by Myung Nam An

We are on the hunt for the most innovative and eye-catching Interior Accessories and Products for the World Interiors News Annual Awards 2013. If you have a new product fresh off the workbench, why not enter it into our awards and get your designs noticed?

Last year, London based designer Naomi Paul did just that and won with her opulent hand-knit OMI pendant.

The World Interiors News Annual Awards are NOW OPEN and all the information you need on how to enter can be found here.
You can keep up to date with the latest entries on our website and enter your own projects!


Retail Interiors make a splash

Posted on November 27, 2012 by Megan

The WAN Retail & Leisure Interiors Awards are well under way and submissions have included many innovative designs. The variety of projects have been impressive as this year the award stretches across four distinct categories: Bars & Restaurants, Hotels & Service outlets (such as spas), Arts and Leisure (including museums, cultural centres and exhibitions), and Retail Outlets.

With such a wide range of projects included, this year’s award is set to be a design extravaganza that will showcase many different and unusual designs. An eye-catching entry this week comes from Orbit Design Studio (Bangkok, Thailand) for their project, Allure. The design for restraunteur Cipriani’s new yacht club in Abu Dhabi is modern and refined. Using texture and form, Orbit creates an adaptable interior that lends itself to the luxury nature of the brand. Lighting and the division of space, through modular furniture and screens, add to the contemporary environment.

Allure by Cipriani, Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi. By Orbit Design

Closer to home, Leicestershire based design studio officeTwelve were invited by Speedo to design and build an event space in the prestigious Harrods department store. The ‘Swimming Pool’ installation would attract over 5,000 customers over a 4 week period and would present female fashion swimwear, male and female training swimwear and the new Hero Collection range.

The ‘Swimming Pool’ concept displayed diving mannequins entering from the ceiling into a pool of water which coincided with water effect lighting. Bubble walls encasing running water provided an added sensory experience with pool ladders also entering from the ceiling all complete the underwater experience that attracted huge interest from tourists all over the world.

“The Harrods team was really impressed with the result,” said the Speedo Trade Marketing Manager.

“The head of retail for Sports said it was the best execution in that area he had ever seen!”

Speedo at Harrods by officeTwelve

The Retail and Leisure Interiors Award closes at the end of the year so there is still plenty of time to enter your project. We are looking for all types of interior design across the four categories listed above from small independent shops to large superstores, pop-up exhibitions and hotel suites.

For all the information you need on submission guidelines and how to enter your projects, just visit our website. We are looking forward to seeing the full spectrum of projects, from the luxury to the obscure, the aesthetically indulgent to the down right practical!

To check out the competition and view all the latest entries just visit our project page.

We look forward to reading your comments!