We met Giorgia Zanellato and Daniel Bortoto in their new studio in Treviso. Both graduates from ECAL talk to us about their influences, working experiences, challenges of contemporary Italian design and their own working philosophy.

Adam Štěch May 2016
How did you set up your own studio? What are the main challenges for a young design studio like yours in Italy? 

Daniel Bortotto: I was working for Adrien Rovero in Lausanne after the school. And moved back to Italy, because we wanted to make something together with Giorgia. The first project was Aqua Alta collection, presented at Salone Satellite in 2013.
Georgia Zanellato: There are many challenges. Italy is well known for furniture producers. The most important ones in the design world are still based in northern Italy. But problem for us is that they do not want to collaborate with young Italian designers so much. We are not so attractive or exotic enough for them. And there are other challenges. In design world, everybody is a designer now. There is big concurrency. Anyway, the space is for many designers, but you have to choose right way to work, focus on something. That's why we work with the stories, based on our own traveling and places we visit.
Despite you said it is a problem for young Italian designers to collaborate with the Italian producers, you successfully started to collaborate with a such a heavyweight as Moroso is. How did it start? And how is it to collaborate with such a big furniture producer? 

Daniel Bortotto:  It was during Salone Satellite 2013 when we have exhibited our Aqua Alta collection of textiles and accessories. The collection was inspired by traditional flood in Venice, called Aqua Alta. And it composed of carpet, textiles and some objects translated the details of Venice and its sea erosion into the products. Patrizia Moroso, owner of the company, passed by our stand and she really liked the collection. And it was very nice meeting her, she was very friendly. After that we met her again during the summer in Udine, where Moroso is based and she had an idea to translate our textile to piece of furniture for the company. The outcome is La Serenissima seating collection paying homage to the rich cultural history of the city of Venice. Inspired by the sedimentations of the walls corroded by the water of Venice.

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Adam Štěch

As an art theoretician, writer, and curator, Adam Štěch is focused on design, architecture, and fashion. He is a co-founder of the creative collective OKOLO, responsible for dozens of design publications and exhibitions in the Czech Republic and abroad. Since 2009 he has been the editor of Prague-based magazine Dolce Vita. Štěch writes for Wallpaper, Modernism, DAMN°, Cool Hunting, Domus, Architonic, Mark, Frame, A10, and Sight Unseen. He has collaborated with Phillips de Pury, Casa Mollino, Gubi, Designblok, Tolix, Verreum, Form, Design Museum Holon, Depot Basel, Bratislava Design Week, Vienna Design Week, Ziba, Dox, Qubus, Maharam, and more.

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