Palmador - DimoreStudio
by Maria Rossi
photography Lorenzo Sampaolesi
13 May 2015
Just one step into "Palmador," presented for Salone del Mobile in Milan, is enough to throw you back under the DimoreStudio spell. That sense of vibrant interplay of forces, of an enthralling beauty that lets chaos as well as control in, characterizes yet again the atmosphere that Emiliano Salci and Britt Moran—the creative duo behind the Italian design studio—keep conjuring up artfully.
By Dimore's own way of intending interior design—which transcends the boundaries of the discipline—the very idea of a lived-in space is at stake rather than a mere design products presentation. Following sociological changes by which a home is perceived less as a semi-permanent assumption in life and more as the result of a temporary exchange, a relationship with its residents, Dimore turns these complex propositions into a visual debate. This relationship too is subject to the test of time, and changes with the flow of events, like life itself.
Thus every time you enter the world of DimoreStudio, you'd expect things to not be the same as last time, to have shifted forward while preserving a coherent essence, a signature that's unmistakably Dimore's own.
In a way, it can be said that the studio's presentations, although being worlds apart, echo—partly, and in their own terms—a language that is proper to fashion: that of stripping everything bare and starting over every season, and by creating shows that channel ideas and images rather than just products.
In this new chapter of DimoreStudio's evocative story, the players—with their demanding presence—are the furniture pieces which interact just like on a set, creating a scene. The latter makes use of the material grammar of mirrors, stained glass, brass, lacquered wood and silver finishings. Walls and floors—also players in the scene—change and adapt to the act, scattering their fixed and material substance and becoming a blank canvas for the scenario. At times they have the soft glow of chlorophyl green or they become palm tree leaves or shimmer like gold in other instances.
The house of Dimore is also debuting a capsule collection of rich textiles, as the result of ten years of research. The ornate and geometric prints—woven on large surface looms—were sourced from original Deco archives and drawings. The lavishness of these jacquards is enhanced by the use of precious fabrics like tussah—a chain of silk and other precious yarns, and by finishing techniques like silver pigmentation and synthetic lamination overlays in a direction that also acknowledges a contemporary orientation in fashion.
On the left: The light chlorophyll hue of the first room provides an ideal backdrop for the symphony of colors and patterns composed by the rolls of rich textiles found nonchalantly reclining against the walls. The capsule collection Progetto Tessuti—comprising jacquard and printed fabrics—is made up of twelve geometric and four adorned patterns. The sharp angles of the hand-made cement Deco tiles in cold blues and greys, lightly accented by touches of yellow, complement the setting of this room. On the right: A video installation unexpectedly throws visitors into a vintage movie with only the uncanny presence of the slim arms of a Lampada 061 light fixture re-establishing a signature DimoreStudio balance of contrasting elements. Walls of glistening gold are punctuated by the leafy fingers in polished oxidized brass of two symmetrically placed Lampada 049. Both light pieces belong to the Progetto Non Finito collection.
Above: The tactile and shimmering textures of these textiles from the Precious Jacquards collection thrown on two sofas provides an insouciant kick to the atmosphere. The slightly ghostly appearance of the furniture borrows a touch of lightness from the havana, white and silver/golden inserts of the tactile geometric patterns lavishly decorating their surface.
On the left: The crepuscular light of a mild afternoon breaks into this scene where a conversation between geometric patterns is acted out by a number of characters. Central stage is taken by a chair imposing its golden tones and the lushness of the bordeaux and dune hues of its precious jacquards; answered by the all-over geometric patterns of a bench on the left corner of this room where petrol, red, white and silver lurex hues command attention. The Deco tiles on the floor and vivid light green walls add slower, more muted notes to the scene. On the right: Abstract blades of grass on a white cotton and linen background are the protagonists of this Italian Deco archive print belonging to the 2015 Progetto Tessuti collection.
Above: The blurred edges of lysergic grey, yellow and purple flowers emerge from the light coral texture of this Italian Deco archive print—a piece from the current Progetto Tessuti capsule.
Above: The purest of silk captures this room's soft daylight in another Deco print sourced from the archives by DimoreStudio for this particular textile piece.
Above: An equilibrium of contrasting forces is at the heart of the dramatic tension of this room. The hefty yet transparent multi-color glass silhouettes of tables Esa and Penta—from the Palmador 2015 collection—cut into the lush and electrifying tones of the Palm carpet designed by DimoreStudio and manufactured by Pierre Frey. To complement the atmosphere, the vivid substances of colors draw a line through the walls. While the shadows projected on them by the light of the Lampada 048 ceiling lamp are enhanced by the closed wooden shutters at the windows that allow for just a small quantity of light to come through.
On the left: Opal glass spheres are propped at the end of the brass arms of a Lampada 045 ceiling piece emerging against the background. The chunky structure of a Big One table from Palmador 2015—in lacquered wood with 20 micron silver plated brass details—breaks the chaotic nature of the all-enveloping foliage pattern of the Palm carpet. On the right: The sharp angles of paper folds are evoked by the lines of a Sheet desk, also a piece from the Palmador capsule collection. In the reflection of its glossy lacquered wood surface, the carpet foliage takes on a watery iridescence created by the light of a semi-open window.
Above: Golden lights alter the very nature of the Palm carpet in another room of the exhibition. The colors of the printed leaves, charged with sepia tones, acquire a rather nostalgic allure.
Above: Cranes materializing on golden walls make for a great final coup de théâtre in the exhibition's last room. The hand-painted Misha wallpaper's precious background tint is enhanced by the dimmable lights of a Lampada 036 piece at the centre of the scene. The lampshade of this ceiling fixture is made in a simil-parchment paper material with garnishing in red cotton trimming rope.