17 April 2016
Once again, Hermès has played the card of the spectacular for the presentation of its Home collections at Milan’s Design Week. Ever since its debut in 2011, with the bamboo pavilion designed by Shigeru Ban, striking installations have sprung up every year at special locations in the city. This year the choice has fallen on the Teatro Vetra, brought to life by the Mexican designer Mauricio Rocha, who favors local materials and a low-tech approach to construction: he has created an imposing structure out of bricks of tuff from Puglia, laid without mortar and held together by a steel grating. The structure is divided into four “rooms,” laid out around a colonnaded patio, and the ceiling has been left open, only partially covered with raffia panels. The display is the work of the set designer Hervé Sauvage, who has played around with objects suspended from ropes and pulleys. In each of the rooms the new additions to the collection are presented on cobalt blue plinths and stands: furniture and other objects, fabrics and wallpaper designs created under the guidance of the Home sector’s new artistic directors: Charlotte Macaux Perelman and Alexis Fabry. They include a range of seats inspired by the Oria chair, designed by Rafael Moneo in the early sixties in a combination of cane with a light wooden frame that was a tribute to Alvar Aalto. Équilibre, on the other hand, is a tour de force of leatherwork, coupled with untreated maple, wicker and brass. In addition, there are true collectors’ items in the form of the two cabinets, one for a man to store his watches in and the other to hold a woman’s jewelry: alongside the central block with a mirror and drawers, they have portable cases ready to be put in a suitcase at a moment’s notice. The exhibition is bound together with a triptych of decorative panels by the Irish illustrator Nigel Peake: entitled A Walk in the City, they present an abstract image of an imaginary metropolis caught at three different moments of the day: Morning, Afternoon and Evening.
Hermès at Teatro Vetra
Construction by Mauricio Rocha, display by Hervé Sauvage
Teatro Vetra, Milan
April, 12 – 17