The Mediterranean sea has since ever been a field for convergence, crossbreedings, contaminations and hybridizations originating a stratification of techniques and competences representing an extraordinary patrimony susceptible to be continuosly re-worked out through new interpretations, grafting a contemporary mark onto tradition.
Thus, the Sicilian company LITHEA, from 17 to 22 of April 2018, will present at the next Milano International Furniture Fair the collection “Mediterranean Grafts”, born from a collaboration with five designers, all having specially strong ties with this sea: Pierluigi Piu (with his two projects CòRBULAS and PIBIòNES), Philippe Nigro (IMBREX), Elena Salmistraro (CALTAGIRONE and MONREALE) and Martinelli Venezia Studio (MAIOLICHE di PIETRA), each with their own expressive language, that have drawn inspiration from cultural cross-bedding, reinterpreting, distilling and deriving from it projects of new surfaces suitable for all kind of interiors: wall claddings and fixtures telling stories, a kind of technologically evolved wall tapestries conceived for contract as well as for houses projects.
The main role of the collection is played by the precious stones and marbles that LITHEA has skilfully worked with for over fifty years, devoting the talent of highly qualified craftsmen to the creation of small series of very special products.
Design: Pierluigi Piu, 2018
That’s how, in the plains of Campidàno, in Sardinia (Italy), people used to name round baskets, mostly large and low ones, used to contain and measure cereals or other foods, which once women used to carry balancing them on their heads. They are made by weaving hay stalks and reed fibres together and are embellished with insertions of brocade or gaudy coloured curly stripes of woollen cloth forming geometrical or local flora and fauna inspired patterns. Peasants once used to decorate their houses hanging them in groups on the walls; this secondary function has been here reinterpreted, reducing the baskets to the reproduction as natural stone bas-reliefs of their most elaborate parts – their bottoms – and adding depth by a protruding placement against the wall and the introduction of striking luminous halos.
Design: Pierluigi Piu, 2018
Wall “tapestries” made out of chiselled natural stone, inspired by a waving technique peculiar to Sardinia (Italy), where decorations – geometric patterns, allegories or ancient symbols of prosperity and fertility, such as the vine branch or the lapwing bird – are enhanced by a sort of grains in relief (named pibiònes) generated by sequences of small loops executed with the weft thread.
LITHEA – Milano International Furniture Fair, from 17 to 22 of April 2018 – Hall 22/stand F35
Info and images courtesy of Pierluigi Piu