By Secondome

The Gallery - Sketch

At The Gallery restaurant in London, inside the bigger and more refined Sketch, dedicated to music and art, the two founders Mourad Mazouz and Pierre Gagnaire set the rule to change the installed art works every two years. And this is what they have been doing since 2002. With one exception: the color of the interior, a peculiar nuance of pink chosen by the interior designer India Madhavi in 2014, contrasting with the ironical and unsettling illustrations by David Shrigley, has been left unchanged since.

There is a simple reason behind this exception: since the day Madhavi choose the Rose quartz for The Gallery’s walls and furniture, that tone has begun influencing interiors all over the word, as Madhavi herself replicated it in other successful projects. Meanwhile the nuance was all over the runways, the web (foreseen by a group of graphic designers a few years before) and technological gadgets, so much that the New York Times gave it a pop name, Millennial pink, linking the color to the liking of under 35 people.

Grand Budapest Hotel

Sure, 2014 is the year of Grand Budapest Hotel by Wes Anderson and the dreamlike interiors in shades of pink. Six years before, in 2008, Julian Schnabel used pink to paint the top floors of his “Palazzo Chupi” in New York. However it took Madhavi for the Millenial pink to be declared Color of the year by Pantone in 2016, matched with the Serenity light blue. Meanwhile the Rose quartz ended up in the collections by Gucci, Marni, Balenciaga and Valentino. India herself replicated it successfully in the stores RedValentino in Milan and London and, lastly, in her recently debuted carpet collection, realized in partnership with the French Manufacture Cogolin and named “Jardin Interieur”. “We are often scared of colors” explained Madhavi about this collection, “so the interior design works as our wardrobe: it’s easier to dress total black than to risk and mix colors. On the contrary, I love to contrast colors, like a fight. The idea of using pink for The Gallery was born exactly to give life to a strong contrast with the rest of the space and Shringley’s works”.

RedValentino | Rome, via del Babuino

But why the Millenial pink is so loved? And, more importantly, how long is it destined to last? If Madhavi - born in Teheran from Egyptian mother and Iranian father - chose it led by the influence of a globetrotting childhood spent back and forth US and Europe, fascinated by cartoons and the Western pop culture, for the youngest creative the Rose quartz represents a reassuring yet gutsy horizon, like a backdrop where to play all the fluidity, including the sexual one, in their days and their lives. Neuter but not neutral, almost pastel yet strong, matchable to any other color without losing personality, for Pantone the Rose quartz joined together with the Serenity light blue “reflects connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace”. In the last two editions of Maison&Objet in Paris, in September and January, the Millenial pink was still dominating, with Tom Dixon, Nomess, Petite Future and Nude engaged in editing or re-editing pieces in this nuance. Now it’s up to Milan: will next design week see a passage of baton to another color?



Secondome interviews Matteo Cibic

Vasonaso 2017 

If design is (also) the art of conciliating the opposites, then Matteo Cibic it’s one of its most representative personalities. On one side, the hiperactivity of a man who, at 34, has its creations exhibited in the most influent collections, from the Centre Pompidou in Paris to the Shanghai Museum of Glass. On the other side, the perseverance, dedication and method that led him to look for inspiration in Giorgio Morandi’s work. This is how VasoNaso was born, form the idea of replicating an inspiration like Morandi did, elaborating on one aspect’s possible variations. The result was, indeed, VasoNaso first collection of 365 pieces, one for each 2016’s day, perfect synthesis of hiperactivity and dedication. A project that is not over.

Who is Matteo Cibic?
“A tall, blonde guy, who loves to draw and produce unexpected objects and spaces."

You realized one of the most interesting and researched self-produced projects of the last years: is VasoNaso a closed chapter or are you thinking of a sequel?
“VasoNaso is a project born with the need of understanding how some people manage to dedicate decades, if not their entire life, to the same artistic research.

As a hyperactive boy, I’m fascinated by methodic people and experimented for one year the obsession of still-life painters. I’ve discovered a zen practice that I enjoy and allows me to discover new relations between shapes and colors, I’ve made vases (often antiques’ replicas) composing them in photography sets. I’ve developed a slight addiction, that’s why I keep making unique VasoNaso for Galleries, to keep up with my sociological study on objects.”



Matteo Cibic in the glass-blowing laborathory


During an interview you said that Giorgio Morandi painted the same thing for his entire life and you wanted to try and do the same. Are you looking for the perfect VasoNaso?
“The perfect VasoNaso doesn’t exist. Their beauty is in putting them together and find their relationship and similarities, always different and sometimes funny."

The first adjectve that comes to mind looking at your works is ironic. What is your approach to new projects?
"I like to imagine objects with hybrid functions and not easily classifiable.”

Which is the material you are the most confortable with?
“Definitely ceramic and glass.”

What would you like to design you haven’t designed yet?
“A boutique hotel anywhere in the world.”

Uzito collection for Secondome



by Secondome

What the Radical design (still) says in our homes.

There was a huge ferment in the designing and architectural Italy between the end of the 60s and the beginning of the 70s. So much that the MoMa, in 1972, set up the exhibition Italy. The New Domestic Landscapes, thought as an homage to the creatives, mostly architects, that for few years had been relaunching the project under an utopistic key, making Florence, where the most of them were from, the epicenter of this explosion that will be later defined, radical architecture and radical design.

Utopie Radicali | Palazzo Strozzi's exhibition

There were Archizoom and Remo Buti, 9999 and Gianni Pettena, Superstudio and Lapo Binazzi, Ufo and Zziggurat. There were revolutionary point of views and alternative ideas. There was a huge will to have fun, there was, most of all, looking at it from the interior design perspective, the ability of translate these ideas into furnitures, objects and settings able to become the plastic representation of a new way to look at things and housing. It was a challenge that involved everyone, form the professionals to the companies that, indeed, were engaged into the production of these new pieces designed by those new prophets.

As Quaderna, the table and console signed by Superstudio in 1970 and still produced by Zanotta: rigid geometry, simple and perfect shapes. Or Archizoom’s inhabitable Wardrobes and Ufo’s Paramount and Dollar. All these pieces, although provocative, are still contemporary not only in the concept that inspired them.


Utopie Radicali | Palazzo Strozzi's exhibition

Actually, there never was a coded radical movement with a set of rules: what existed were the groups that conceived and interpreted those inputs and ideas at the same time. However we are induced to think of that phenomenon as a manifesto as it was huge and it still sends us that message with incredible strength.

Utopie Radicali | Palazzo Strozzi's exhibition

It’s the will to rediscover that world that brought 15.000 visitors - a blast- to Utopie Radicali (Radical Utopias), the exhibition curated by Pino Brugellis, Gianni Pettena and Alberto Salvadori on in Florence’s Palazzo Strozzi, in May at Canadian Centre for Architecture of Montreal, that co-produced it. An occasion to remember that Italian architecture and design can still be of example and gather followers all over the world.

Photo credits: Palazzo Strozzi's Archives



By Claudia Pignatale

When Secondome was asked to curate the interior design project for Casa Italia in Rio De Janeiro for the 2016 Olympic Games, I only had a slight idea of how challenging and fulfilling this work was going to be.

The previous Casa Italia were institutional headquarters, set up for practicality more than representation.


The 2016 project aimed to a completely different objective: we had to highlight Italian excellence through and through- from the world of sports to that of design; a showcase of the craftsmanship that lies behind the label “Made in Italy”, as well as our ability to merge with the host Country culture and we had to do it in the setting of the historical Costa Brava Clube, in Rio de Janeiro, designed in the 60’ s by renowned architect Ricardo Menescal.

Beatrice (Bertini, co-founder of Ex Elettrofonica art gallery ndr) came up with the concept Horizontal that extended to an art and design project, with Ex Elettrofonica responsible for developing the arts and Secondome the interior design.

The ambitious goal of Project Horizontal, was to promote Italy in all her authenticity to an international public, and what better testimonials of the iconic images and objects that have turned Italy into an historical cultural reference point?


Horizontal indeed exemplified a style, a horizontal approach to considering and embracing all the activities that will take place in this location as forms of art, be they: objects, images, furnishings, hospitality or cuisine.

Casa Italia was, to its guests, an unique experience: a virtuous contamination between the Italian and Brazilian culture which resulted into a contemporary, unique and welcoming setting

A location that persistently recalled the links between the two countries.


Wine Bar                                                                                 Bar

In the restaurant, a spacious and panoramic area with floor to ceiling glass walls overlooking the ocean, carefully arranged and alternating “Vidun” and “Quadrato” tables, both designed by Magistretti for De Padova, inspired by the structure of screws and in a minimalist and quasi Nordic looking style – exemplify Italian functionality and craftsmanship. The translucent, gold and topaz embroidered “Gina” chairs by Jacopo Foggini for Edra, glittered as the immense natural light beamed into the venue. The “Big Louie” 3D printed chandeliers, by David Nosanchuk for .exnovo, hung from the ceiling, dominated the room

The choice of venue for Casa Italia, a site integrated but perched on the top of a sea cliff, lead me to a natural choice of furnishings for the lounge: Francesco Binfarè’s for Edra “On the rocks” sofa, that forms a relaxed and inviting archipelago and Emmanuel Babled’s “Etnastone” coffee tables, made from Sicilian volcanic stone, that lie dotted around the room. Throughout the lounge through to the bar area, Francesco Simeti’s “City of Gold” wallpaper lined the walls, reconnecting and recalling the Brazilian Favelas and industrial suburbs. Carefully chosen “La Lollo” suspended lamps by Slamp, traced and illuminated the journey from the lounge to the bar.

Covered terrace

Looking onto the lounge, lied a cigar bar with stone lined walls, furnished with Francesco’ s Binfarè’s for Edra “Sfatto” sofas and “Favelas” armchairs also designed for Edra by the Campana Brothers – notable Brazilian designers. The Bar counter, bar/coffee tables were designed and produced with Brazilian wood by Stefano Marolla, carpenter and cabinet maker.

The small, covered roof terrace is a peaceful corner in which one had the sensation of being immersed in the surrounding nature, further emphasized by the colors and style of: Edra’s shimmering blue “Standard” sofas, bright red tulip-line “Getsuen” chairs and the Campana Brothers “Brasilia” tables.

The external lounge, facing the ocean and furnished with “Standard – Cloud” and the “Flap” sofas by Francesco Binfaré for Edra, and the armchairs Capitello, Attica and Attica TL by Studio 65 for Gufram, was a tribute to the Italian Olympic Team motto “ready to fly”, the “Chantal” chandeliers by Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas for Slamp and “Bonjour Milan” coffee table by Atelier Biagetti, completed and complemented this area, that resembled a private and secluded area of the sky.


Lounge Azzurri

It was a real challenge to set up the whole place. We had a well laid plan that, of course, was never on schedule. I’ve been in Brazil for almost a month and when got back, tired but extremely satisfied, I understood the full meaning of”saudade”.

Photo by Rui Teixeira