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by STIRworldPublished on : Apr 27, 2023
Loro Piana Interiors launched a new project titled Apacheta, created by Argentinian designer and artist Cristián Mohaded, at Milan Design Week 2023. The installation was on show at the Cortile della Seta, at Loro Piana's Milanese headquarters in the Brera Design District and is inspired by the Andean tradition of marking paths with piles of stones called Apachetas, built by travellers over centuries as a tribute to Mother Earth. As more travellers passed by, these stacks of stones composed of irregularly shaped rocks grew into towering structures that appeared to reach towards the sky. Mohaded drew inspiration from this Andean tradition as well as his childhood in Catamarca Province, surrounded by rocks, olive trees, clay buildings, and red lakes to design the new project.
He created a surreal landscape with 12 towers that resemble Apachetas, using fabrics from Loro Piana's previous interior collections. Through the installation, the stones gain a second life, inviting a conversation about sustainability and the possibility of reusing discarded materials. Wooden elements are hand-carved into the more rounded parts of the furniture to create contrast, like rocks between the stones, offering stability and surfaces to rest objects on.
Mohaded, a graduate of the National University of Córdoba, splits his time between Buenos Aires and Milan and hopes his work will provide a glimpse into lesser-known regions of the world, encouraging contemplation on the value of repurposing discarded materials. "This project is undoubtedly another bridge of that relationship and connection between Latin America and the brand,” explains Mohaded. "A unique, dreamy landscape that defies the imagination of each one of those travelling souls, who travel and meet those monumental contractions in the form of towers, alive with colour and memory of a living land. In which we feel identified by each of those parts that build everything. Apacheta is a message to our Pachamama; it is history, it is culture, it is honesty and respect.”
Mohaded and Loro Piana Interiors have created an almost dreamlike landscape, taking inspiration from the contrasting landscapes of Catamarca, Argentina, where the rarest of natural animal fibres—vicuña, is sourced by Loro Piana. Their collaboration is based on shared values, such as a passion for materials and craftsmanship, and the certainty that contrasts can create beauty and harmony.
The ceramic colours are inspired by the Argentine lagoons, red or white, and are transformed into the surface of the tables, creating small lagoons between the furniture. Visitors entering the design installation turn into travellers, wandering respectfully in a landscape where all the original contrasts are recreated by mixing and juxtaposing textures and materials. The project and installation are a message to Pachamama, history, culture, honesty, and respect and offer its visitors a place to relax and reflect amidst the bustling atmosphere of Milan Design Week 2023.
"We approached Cristián knowing his passion for craftsmanship, his research in materials, his extreme love for them, for their textures and contrasts. Everything he creates starts from this, and we thought it was the right artist to entrust with our own materials,” explains Francesco Pergamo, director of Loro Piana Interiors Division. "When we saw the project, we had the immediate certainty that it was beyond expectations. Cristián has not only put all his magic into the materials but has infused the design with all the values we share.”
Loro Piana Interiors is a division of Loro Piana dedicated to designing and creating fabrics, accessories, and furniture pieces for interior decoration using the rarest and highest quality fibres worldwide. The division's fabrics are meticulously crafted from luxurious materials such as cashmere, wool, linen, silk, and cotton, either in pure form or blended exclusively to produce unique weaves and textures. The installation was open to the public during Milan Design Week, giving Loro Piana's guests a unique opportunity to enjoy the splendid view of the Cortile della Seta.
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