Debuting at Milan Furniture Fair, Officine Gullo and Aquazzura (continuing the path that has brought their artistic visions together) have created a capsule collection of free-standing, hand-decorated kitchens. These cooking ranges have been made and decorated painted by hand based on a design by Edgardo Osorio, Founder and Creative Director of luxury footwear brand, Aquazzura; an exotic motif, characterised by flowers and animals from distant lands.
‘I wanted to create a kitchen that spoke the same language as our home collection and felt unique and one of a kind. We worked together with Italian artists to hand paint the pieces, turning an everyday object into something extraordinary,’ says Edgardo. The superior quality metals used on the cooking units, presented in the tones of pastel pink and green, pair beautifully with the finely applied designs added by skilled artisans, which transform these kitchens into authentic works of art.
‘We’d been thinking for quite some time about a customised, hand decorated collection to make our kitchens even more unique. Our clients love the unique features and the possibility to customise every kitchen design project in terms of size, colour, and finish. With this capsule collection we have taken another step in this direction,’ says Andrea Gullo, Managing Director of Officine Gullo. ‘Kitchens are no longer just designer items, but they can be genuine works of art, unrepeatable creations, designed and made exclusively for their owners. It is the exact opposite of mass-produced.’
The Italian brands, which come from two different worlds – design and fashion – pool their shared values in a constant quest for beauty and for perfection in terms of detailing, celebrating the excellence of Florentine master craftsmanship. Andrea adds, ‘After our initial meeting, we wanted to take things further in this partnership, being bolder, and playing with shapes and colours to create something different, something fresh. I was fascinated by the decorations used by Aquazzura and the images they evoke, which are linked to the exotic, to the irresistible charm of distant lands and cultures.
‘These ideas are what inspired the great European artists of the late 19th century, such as Gauguin, and formed the backdrop for the novels of Salgari and Conrad. I remember those chinoiserie motifs that can be found decorating many of northern Italy’s aristocratic villas, with elegant wallpapers and lavish wooden carvings,’ says Andrea.
Officine Gullo carefully studied the techniques to create the decorative elements so that they could last over time, in spite of the warm temperatures of ovens and cooktops. The design is applied entirely by hand using acrylic tempera paints and varnishes with special protectants. The paintwork is slightly embossed to the touch, in a way that reflects how art is such an intrinsic part of this project, where the kitchen is seen as an exclusive canvas.