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Seven Designers Spent the Summer at an Italian Palazzo. Here Are the Results.

It would be a dream brief in any creative field: Set up shop in a 13th-century palazzo at the foot of the Italian Alps with a group of friends, and see what comes of it. And yet that's exactly what Étage Projects founder Maria Foerlev offered to her stable of designers this summer, inviting seven contemporary design practices to Palazzo Monti, an artist's residency program and creativity incubator.
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"We left a selection of ours behind as well."

Calico Wallpaper at Villa Lena

A couple before they were partners in design, Nick Cope and Rachel Mosler founded Calico Wallpaper together two years ago in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Mosler was an art therapist on paid leave from NYU's temporarily shuttered hospital; Cope ran a design/build firm whose projects had all been put on hold. "We'd always wanted to do a project that touched on both of our backgrounds — something for the home that had an art-like quality," says Cope. "Rachel studied sculpture at RISD and has a Master's in art therapy, and I went to NYU for photo and digital design." On a lazy afternoon in the East Village, Cope found an image of obscure types of paper marbling in an antique shop and brought it home. Mosler loved it and immediately began delving into the history and process of the ancient technique. "We realized quickly we had something interesting on our hands," says Cope.
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