Brutalist-inspire ikebana vases by Studio Testo

These Brutalist-Inspired Vases Will Up Your Ikebana Game

Last time we featured Studio Testo, we noted Giulia Dolci and Giulia Fauro Alessi’s uncanny ability to make pieces that are on-trend and effortlessly cool. So it comes as no surprise that their latest collection of sculptural vases has a similarly refreshing vibe, taking cues from Brutalist architecture and adding in some ikebana by Irene Cuzzaniti and fresh textiles by AH/OK.
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Maniera Gallery for the Operae design fair

Fake Wood, Real Stone, and Imagined Foam: Our Favorite Collection from the Operae Design Fair

This year's Operae show was curated by Alice Stori Lichtenstein and the fair, always notable for its mix of designers and galleries, featured Sight Unseen favorites like Campbell Rey, Carwan Gallery, and Maniera. It was the latter gallery who hosted our favorite presentation: a series of layered particle-board furniture developed by the Belgium firm aDVVT as well as a newer series called "Light Conversation Pieces," by the Italian architecture firm Piovenefabi.
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Salvatore Fiume Italian Ceramicist

Meet the Late Italian Ceramicist Inspiring Today’s Coolest Artists

As trend scouts, avid social media consumers, and Google Image Search addicts, we often happen across works, names, and images that cause our internal YES bells to go off. Starting today, we've decided to give them the airtime they deserve in our new Current Obsession column, the first of which is devoted to Salvatore Fiume — the late Italian artist whose lumpy, curvaceous sculptures seem to somehow be having a resurgence in the work of designers like Sigve Knutson, Thomas Barger, and Carl Emil Jacobsen.
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Week of August 14, 2017

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: another far-flung European art park, (another) terrazzo and pink interior, and a smattering of previews from the upcoming fall design season.
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An Introduction to Italy’s Favorite Anti-Minimalist

It is perhaps ironic that Paola Navone should release a book entitled Tham ma da, a Thai word meaning "ordinary." Tham ma da doesn't refer to Navone's design sense, however, nor is it an adjective to describe the interiors she creates. But it is a fitting description of how she can take a humble material and multiply it so that the effect is something much, much greater.
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We Spent Two Months With 12 Artists in a Tuscan Paradise

When you tell people that you just got back from a two-month stay in a 19th-century Tuscan villa with three swimming pools where you had your own artist's studio and a gourmet chef cooking you dinner every night, the first thing they tend to do is giggle: It sounds like you're making it up. But the Villa Lena is no fairy tale, it's a very real place with a very real residency program that we participated in this summer, and documented here with the help of Berlin art director Sarah Illenberger.
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Italian Product Designer Giorgia Zanellato

About six or seven years ago, when Jill and I were still editors at the late, great I.D. magazine, we had a gut feeling that something was happening in Italian design. For years its reputation had been seemingly stuck in the '80s — no one ever, ever talked about its contemporary scene — and yet suddenly we were seeing a few young talents pop up here and there. We commissioned a story on the subject, but despite our prescience (as evidenced in part by the subsequent head-spinning rise of Luca Nichetto), we missed something seriously major: Fabrica. Neither of us realized the impact its residency program and Sam Baron–led design studio would have in nurturing Italy's brightest new voices, from Matteo Cibic to Matteo Zorzenoni to today's subject, Giorgia Zanellato.
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Spotti Milano, Summer Tales interior project, 2014

Studiopepe, Stylists and Set Designers

When describing their sensibility, Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara Di Pinto of the Milan-based Studiopepe invoke the versatility of classic white shirt: “You can wear it anytime, to go to the supermarket or to a soirée. The same is for design. Good design — whether a masterpiece or anonymous — goes with everything.” Their evocative aesthetic, though, is anything but simple. “Eclecticism and curiosity” are important starting points for them, and their output is rich with visual references, ranging from the harmony of classical forms to the glamour of Italian cinema in the ‘60s. But they don’t merely quote their source material, they transform it.
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Michele Reginaldi, Architect

Michele Reginaldi is an established Italian architect and visual artist. Born in Teramo in 1958, he has been a partner at Gregotti Associati since 1998. He began working on a series of form studies — what he refers to as constructions — in the late 1980s that have grown to include more than 120 individual pieces. These constructions range in size and shape, but all are made from the same material — brass. Reginaldi classifies his constructions into four categories: studies around the circle, studies in verticality, light structures, and constructions for architecture. These pieces are crucial to his success as an architect; on their own the constructions are beautiful sculptural works, but when put into the context of architecture they become important explorations in scale and proportion. Knowing this, his constructions’ influence is clearly evident when browsing the architectural projects of his practice.
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Valentina Cameranesi Sgroi’s Associations Vases

Italian product designer Valentina Cameranesi Sgroi worked as lead designer for Diesel Home — developing furniture and lighting for its collaborations with Moroso and Foscarini — for three years before becoming a freelance creative director in 2012. Since then, she's also developed a personal body of work that includes video art, photography, and ceramics, exploring "the relationship between the natural and artificial." Her latest project, Associations, is a series of vases that take inspiration from '70s craftsmanship but with simple, expressive shapes that evoke Ettore Sottsass and the Italian artist Gino de Dominicis. All of the pieces in the collection are made by artisans in Veneto, Italy.
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