Curator Constance Rubini

Curator for Southern Europe

Southern Europe is home to many talented young designers. However, in this part of the world, as anywhere else in these early years of the 21st century, the expression ‘young designers’ encompasses a wide range of approaches and styles. The initial question was how to define a selection that both celebrates that diversity while also expresses a point of view. 

Before any other criterion, the designers here have been selected on the strength of their capacity to apprehend and transfigure the rich potential of the Hallingdal textile. Beyond the aptness of the forms, the sense of fantasy and creative flair, our choices were motivated by a desire to explore new ways of working with the fabric. While some designers might be quite comfortable working with textiles, immediately seeing it as a source of ideas and structures, the challenge was to choose those singular personalities who would be most likely to devise wholly original proposals, and who would bring variety to the body of work as a whole.

This approach proved fruitful: from the floating Silla Marioneta by Martín Azúa to the endearing Zoo by Ionna Vautrin. Just as inspiring are the tent by Spain's Mermeladaestudio (perhaps the most fitting homage to Nanna Ditzel), the plush hammock by Jean-Baptiste Fastrez, the radical sofa by Martí Guixé, the revolving stool by Constance Guisset and the billowy coffin-sofa by Benjamin Graindorge. Finally we have the finely finished Layers cupboard by Miguel Vieira Baptista, the long bench by François Mangeol, and the coffee table by Pauline Deltour, with its structure based entirely on the Hallingdal fabric. Overall the result is an array of upbeat, offbeat, delightful creations.