A Touch of DivinityA Touch of Divinity

07 April 2014 by Veerle Devos

A Touch of Divinity

Exhibition Every Colour Is Divine, Salone del Mobile, Milan, 09–11 April.

Two years ago in Milan, Kvadrat impressed many visitors during the Salone with a refreshing exhibition, presenting innovative applications and variations on the Hallingdal 65 - one of the company's most successful and longstanding fabrics - by emerging and established designers from all areas. For this year’s edition of the fair, the Danish textile company has once more invited a varied bunch of highend international designers and curators to explore the various possibilities of yet another of Kvadrat’s upholstery materials, Divina. The whole project is being exhibited d..

DIVINA collection


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Rosso e BiancoRosso e Bianco

14 March 2014 by Patrizia Coggiola

Rosso e Bianco

Alberto Alessi and the art of wine

Winemaking can be a beautiful thing. All that is needed is for the vintner to adopt a philosophical and uncompromising approach. Alberto Alessi rather stumbled upon the métier. It all started with the purchase of a certain cascina in northern Italy, one on which he had long ago set his heart. From there his passion blossomed and he developed a pristine approach to the wine that would be produced from the Lake Orta region. This not only involved the nectar but every aspect of its presentation. Engaging experts in each category, he proceeded to compile a package of talent that woul..

Alberto Alessi; photo Simone Casetta.


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Celebrating Scar TissueCelebrating Scar Tissue

14 March 2014 by Sam Steverlynck

Celebrating Scar Tissue

Baptiste Debombourg’s history of violence

Although the artist doesn’t once mention it during this DAMN° interview, one could say that Baptiste Debombourg has a bit of a Humpty Dumpty complex going on… Prone to breaking objects to bits, simply in order to re-join the pieces, is not exactly standard practice. Alas, the technique is working well for him, that much is clear, and as such he is faring much better than all the king’s horses and all the king’s men. In fact, even though Debombourg exercises a certain form of destruction at the start of his artistic process, his favourite part is actually wha..

From the Social Philosophy series; cigarette butts.

baptistedebombourg.com maisonmartinmargiela.com

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Between Two ChairsBetween Two Chairs

14 March 2014 by Anna Sansom

Between Two Chairs

Martino Gamper, maker and tweaker

Here is a designer who has fallen between the manmade cracks. Operating true to his profession yet going about it in an unconventional way, is what sets Martino Gamper apart from many contemporary designers. He has a fondness for the found, for the discarded, for the peculiar, undesirable objects that have fallen by the wayside, and he uses these items to inform himself of himself, and thereby assist him in nurturing his talent. The show he has curated at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery is a perfect example of his working method, as the process of assembling an exhibition wholly resonate..

Bench to Bench, Hackney Wick, London. Photo: Angus Mill.


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Cleaner, Clearer, Brighter, BetterCleaner, Clearer, Brighter, Better

14 March 2014 by Jane Withers

Cleaner, Clearer, Brighter, Better

On the future of water everywhere

In this time of extreme weather conditions it behoves us, one and all, to take even more heed of the water around us. Political paralysis and overconsumption are rife, and as such, it is appropriate to revert to experimental thinking if we are ever to properly address the way we tackle the challenges and truly respect the waters around us. Here, DAMN° sheds light on the wonders of water.

The floods in the UK, February 2014 Photos: Matilda Temperley.

mcny.org/exhibition/rising-waters octopi.co.uk github.com/NelsonMinar/vector-river-map wonderwater.fi pluspool.org louisiana.dk nleworks.com janewithers.com

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Yappity YapYappity Yap

14 March 2014 by Pedro Gadanho

Yappity Yap

Architecture Activates Culture, Culture Activates Architecture

YAP, the programme for young architects hosted by MoMA PS1 on a yearly basis, is almost too good to be true. Except it is true. On the strength of a key music event, this concentrated competition gives young architects a chance to design a real venue for a dreamy purpose and thereby nudge themselves into the limelight that might otherwise take them a lifetime to obtain. By its very nature, this programme ekes out the most avant-garde proposals, revealing the capabilities of the extremely talented among young architects today. And meanwhile, a stunning environment is provided for the cro..

THE LIVING: HY-FI TOWERS. The Living's 100% organic Hy-Fi towers have won MoMA PS1's Young Architects Program 2014.


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On Top of the WorldOn Top of the World

14 March 2014 by Lyle Rexer

On Top of the World

Luca Campigotto treads the path of the warriors

Photographer Luca Campigotto was moved to scale the Dolomite Mountains. Retracing the route of the soldiers who had been allocated that terrain as their battlefield in the First World War, he became entirely awestruck by the scenery that these vantage points afforded. Nearly ignoring the treacherous pathways that led him to each position and the intense isolation of inhabiting such a landscape for a sizeable duration, Campigotto forged onwards, excelling himself physically, while also achieving astounding photographs.

Lagazuoi, Castelletto: exterior of the Cannon Tunnel looking toward Cima Fanis.

The Strangeness of ThingsThe Strangeness of Things

14 March 2014 by Anna Sansom

The Strangeness of Things

Kolkoz does it with a smile

The two guys who refer to themselves as Kolkoz have a certain way of working that verges on the ornery. They enjoy contrasting their work with the context in which it will be shown. Their past projects, two recent projects, and a new one in preparation, prove hands-down that there’s no end to their tongue-in-cheek approach. DAMn° speaks with the duo about the method behind their approach and, in particular, about their latest projects.

Curiosity, 2013. Art Basel Miami Beach


14 March 2014 by Cristina Guadalupe Galván


Charlotte Perriand’s ethos

Time can play funny tricks. In Charlotte Perriand’s time, much of what she strove to achieve was unable to effectively happen. This was mainly due to her being too far ahead of the present day in terms of her thinking. And also because many factors that would have better facilitated this were not then available. Luckily, her husband and her daughter, both well versed in her legacy, are bent on restoring the various furniture pieces and projects that Perriand designed, all the while honouring her attention to quality.

Charlotte Perriand with Le Corbusier’s halo, 1928. Courtesy of Scheidegger and Spiess.

The Chair that Bounced BackThe Chair that Bounced Back

14 March 2014 by Silvia Anna Barrilà

The Chair that Bounced Back

Celebrating Lina Bo Bardi

One hundred years after the birth of architect Lina Bo Bardi, Arper has decided to produce a limited edition of her iconic Bowl Chair, designed in the 1950s. As if that were not enough, the chair has been refashioned in fabric in a variety of colours, in addition to a version in black leather, as per the original. This has involved some reinterpretation in terms of production methods, but Arper’s CEO maintains that Bo Bardi’s innovative spirit has been respected.

Lina Bo Bardi sitting in the first Bowl Chair prototype, 1950s. Photo: Francisco Albuquerque.

High and DryHigh and Dry

14 March 2014 by Anna Sansom

High and Dry

The story of a Jo’burg skyscraper

In South Africa there is a tall apartment building that has known a history of great change. Affected by politics, economy, and circumstance, the waves of tenants inhabiting this building have been many and various, as have the dramas that accompany rapid flux. Photographers Mikhael Subotzky and Patrick Waterhouse have thoroughly documented the apartments and the residents, at once highlighting the transformation and revealing the way the former utopias and dystopias have since been reinvented. 

Ponte City by Mikhael Subotzky & Patrick Waterhouse, © Magnum Photos.

Out of the Fireplace, into the FireOut of the Fireplace, into the Fire

14 March 2014 by Adam ŠtĚch

Out of the Fireplace, into the Fire

Czech designers + craftsmen retie the knot

Czech craftsmanship and the industry it created prior to the Second World War were impressive. Heartening is the fact that the deep bond between design and craft was instilled to such a degree that even after all the decades that have since intervened with a will to crush this burgeoning momentum, the flame still flickered. Remarkably, it has taken only a few years for designers and craftsmen to revive this relationship, and it’s almost as if the two were never severed.

Daniel González's Jumbo Pot immediately after casting at the Stará Huť foundry. Photo: Tomáš Souček.

The Forest and The TreesThe Forest and The Trees

14 March 2014 by Veerle Devos

The Forest and The Trees

The unstoppable Helmut Smits

The latest projects to come from the hand of Helmut Smits are, like all of his works, humorous, with a generous smidgen of frivolity. In believing that laughter is a tonic, Smits insist on producing works that bring a smile to the face of the viewer. It might be seen as nervy to plant trees in a park full of trees and call it public art, but it is entirely in keeping with the artist’s oeuvre.

Ideas and thoughts by Helmut Smits, published by Onomatopee.

Splendour in the GrassSplendour in the Grass

14 March 2014 by Francesco Spampinato

Splendour in the Grass

Tokyo Picnic Club dreaming large

Did you know that for over ten years now there has been a whole movement devoted to the right to picnic? Well, now you do. It is in Tokyo and it’s a mission of passion. Aside from facilitating the having of picnics by those who fancy it, the organisation intends to convey a distinct point to the local authorities that picnicking should be a readily available possibility for the inhabitants of the Japanese metropolis, and beyond.

Picnopolis, Newcastle/Gateshead. Illustration: Kenji Kitamura.

No More Gassing-UpNo More Gassing-Up

14 March 2014 by Silvia Anna Barrilà

No More Gassing-Up

In praise of the petrol station

Professor Susanna Caccia has written two books on the subject of abandoned service stations, blatantly revealing just how incredible these small edifices actually are. Even though most of us already held this building form in some esteem, it is quite wondrous to see the evidence laid out before us. In parallel, we learn about where and when these facilities sprang up in various parts of the world and just how well an abandoned gas station serves as an art gallery, all of which serves to enamour us evermore.

ESSO Service Station, 1948, The Netherlands.

Under CoverUnder Cover

14 March 2014 by Emma Firmin

Under Cover

A bus to catch in Bregenz

The latest project to happen in a rural village in the Austrian Bregenzerwald has set out to build bus stops as seminal architectural works, and have done so with almighty expectations. These have proven to be entirely justified, as the results go above and beyond the wildest dreams of the organisers. Luring in international architects of repute in combination with local architects and craftsmen, this project has realised a rare and precious exchange that other regions of the world would not dare imagine. 

A study trip with Krumbach's mayor Arnold Hirschbühl, curator Dietmar Steiner (AzW), Antón García-Abril (Ensamble Studio), Smiljan Radic, Marina Hämmerle, Débora Mesa (Ensamble Studio) - with her little baby Alma, and Kiril Ass (Alexander Brodsky) in the

Outer versus InnerOuter versus Inner

14 March 2014 by Veerle Devos

Outer versus Inner

Marc Quinn and The Sleep of Reason

The Sleep of Reason is the name of Marc Quinn’s current exhibition in Istanbul. Featuring a major work that references previous internal conflicts in Greece, Egypt, Brazil, and India, the impact is at once very real and so relevant to what is currently occurring on the streets of the Turkish capital. It is always sobering to witness the moment that art imitates life, and this is a superb case in point.    

The Creation of History (Brazil)

Architecture Against DeathArchitecture Against Death

14 March 2014 by Léopold Lambert

Architecture Against Death

The legacy of Arakawa and Madeline Gins

Focusing on the theme of death, or rather its rejection, Arakawa and Madeline Gins established a practice that expounded upon the concept of not-dying. With their oeuvre embracing many forms – architecture, poetry, philosophy, and art – it was their desire to minimise death’s effect on a body at a given moment, thus to decelerate the death process to the maximum degree. As a result, their architecture is entirely dedicated to the production of actions involving not-dying.

Bioscleave House. Photo: Léopold Lambert.

Water NoveltiesWater Novelties

14 March 2014 by Inês Revés

Water Novelties

A word from those in-the-know

In our usual bid to offer the widest angle on the subject, DAMn° has approached those in key positions in the waterworks industry. With a dozen viewpoints expressed, it is safe to say that the professionals are 100% convinced of the need to honour water as a precious resource, and wish to ensure that it is not wasted. 

DR Tub. Design: Studio MK27, Marcio Kogan, Mariana Ruzante for Agape.