Talking to a full house at NGV International last Thursday, Patrizia Moroso shared her ideas, inspirations, challenges and opportunities as artistic director for one of the world’s leading firms in contemporary furniture – Moroso.
October 14th, 2016
Patrizia Moroso first visited Australia in 2003 with her long-time collaborator, Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola. She was so taken by our spiritual Red Centre it became an inspiration for her own home in Udine, Italy.
“This soul, this earth and this land is very strong, and if you want to make good architecture you have to be strong to compete with the land,” she said.
This month she’s back in Australia for a series of design events, one-on-one conversations and showroom visits hosted by her exclusive importer, Hub Furniture.
In Moroso’s world, design is “to imagine a new world and relate it with the future”. She has a canny ability to combine craftsmanship with new industrial processing techniques, and delights in creating objects that aren’t simply products, but rather a celebration of an ever-flowing generative process and movement. In that, she finds beauty between the gaps, exploring the strange and rethinking ways to interact with space beyond the traditional.
She applied her forward thinking to the collections she first launched in the 1970s, when she was summoned from her art studies to help her parents’ struggling furniture business. Innovative and revolutionary, her luxury sofas and seating proved immensely successful and enabled her and brother, Roberto, to evolve the small artisan-owner brand into the Italian powerhouse it is today.
The world’s most talented designers continue flocking to collaborate with her. She’s worked with Ron Arad, Patricia Urquiola, Doshi Levien, Tom Dixon, Marc Newson and Issey Miyake amongst some 50 others, whom she all counts as friends.
“Design needs to be inspired by life, and we have to create with diverse people for a better world,” she said.
And while her work crisscrosses from fashion and cartoon illustration to sculpture and industrial design, it’s always united by her passion for the inherent spirit of each piece.
“Every object has to have a strong personality,” she says. “Function is not enough.”
She laughs about a recent collaboration with Arad to create the sofa, Matrizia. It was inspired by an old mattress Arad photographed in Tel Aviv one day, discarded and flopped on the street to one side.
“Ron said to me, ‘That mattress, on the street, makes me so happy because I immediately saw it was a possible sofa for you’.” They’ve now created two prototypes, which were shown at last year’s Salone del Mobile, in Milan.
Hub Furniture’s Melbourne and Sydney showrooms will feature a range of work by Moroso as well as collaborations with seven Australian fashion brands, which will be on display until end December.
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