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Interviews

Marcel Wanders

  • “All grown-ups were children once (but most of them have forgotten)” [Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince]. Marcel Wanders surely hasn’t! Wanders, the little prince, the creator of this cosmic realm at Superstudio Piu’, provokes us to return to our playful self! We walk through the confines of the extravagant micro to macrocosmic universe of HI-MACS® LG galaxy, with a persistent curiosity, drawn into Marcel’s screaming, psychedelic, mysterious landscape. It is in his continuous, imaginative playfulness and ingenuity that he transmits so well his sensitivity, to always surprise! “We make objects that are irrelevant until they reach the heads and hearts of people…”[Marcel Wanders] 
     
    His fantasy trespasses borders,

  • nourishing a vast universe, where rational and emotional dialogue together, expanding infinitely beyond the patterned walls, floors and ceilings of HI-MACS® installation. A profound continuity characterizes, as a kind of leitmotif, all his creations from Moooi’s collection to myriad of pieces circulating around the Salone del Mobile. “I consider my works my babies. They are all super important to me. I love making them, I love to treat them well, and I love them to grow. So it would be impolite to say one is more important than the other…. They are all near to my heart; if they are not great they don’t leave my studio. But sometime you get a little gift on the execution; this one (he gestures at the HI-MACS® LG Hausys project) has a wonderful execution so it makes it even more fun for me to be here. ”[M.Wanders] 

    Sitting at the center of Marcel’s sofa, we observe the extravagant ordered system of the galaxy. We explore a space that, due to kaleidoscopic, ever-changing facets, escapes to be reductively read as simple spatiality but involves us as a multi-sensory experience. Patterns transform themselves into discernible constellations of different sizes, some camouflaging in the backdrops of the wallpapers, others on lamps or flowering plants, emphasizing endless repetitions of a complex cosmos. It is the universe of HI-MACS®: so evident are the extraordinary, great possibilities and ductility in applications of the materials. With Wanders’ incorrigible creativity, so eloquent and convincing, we feel immersed in the versatility of the solid surface, from its high tech potential, to the challenges in a field apparently opposite, to thickness and compactness. “We have been looking at what to do with this material; it’s got this beautiful side, but also the ability to be not so nice. It is really flat. So if you don’t use this flatness, you need to find a way to make it more alive. This (referring to his HI-MACS® LG installation) made complete sense: to put layers inside, to put the drama and the definition of the whole. It shows the characteristics of the material in a different way.” [M.Wanders]. 

    Appealing to the macramé’ tradition, one of the finest textile example of transparency, through elaborate, ornamental perforated patterns, he dissolves the compactness of the product into unexpected, imaginative ornamental blooming explosions. Two gigantic medallions orbit synchronized above their barycenter with a new sense of weightless. The solid surface acquires softness, a fine execution of holes polarizing with variety of colors at the center of their galaxy. Optical effects of translucent metallic hexagonal-triangular-quadrilaterals cut panels, on the wall, emphasize a continuous amplification of movement and motion. An adrenaline rush in space! Wander believes in functionality, a quality that can make real things: he is a meticulous handicraftsman but his prolific, visionary talent, infused with passion, is not content to offer only simple, ordinary products. He pushes the boundaries to achieve and offer meaningful, unconventional design, able to challenge our imagination, forcing us to dream. 

    Today, in this particular realization, where the diverse materiality of LG Hausys is at play with the rational and emotional, the master of duality is coherent in his motives. From the image of him as a giant butterfly, full of fantasy and imagination, pierced by a pin as if his feet were stuck to the ground; again to his office, structured on close collaboration between team chaos and team organization. “We had 150-years of rational design and that is great and important, but ultimately I think with this rationality we have created a very small and limited version of ourselves. We are incredible beings! We are fantastic and incredible beings and our rational capacity worries so little of our own. I think, it is important in the context of design we celebrate humanity, not only our brains but also our emotions. I think this is the idea. Look at this, (HI-MACS® LG): how irrational is it? It is super-rational; it is so overwhelming, wonderful and beautiful, that makes me happy. That is the importance of functionality. In design we are looking to do things that are maybe not so rational but speak to the soul and to the heart.” [M.Wanders] People love closely what they can most identify with, and with Marcel’s objects they share this common universal language of emotional. They are personification of himself: a fun, thoughtful and charismatic man who, instead of remaining closed within ‘his little box’, listens with intelligent modesty to others, leaving his creation, the space to tug our heartstrings and to become the backbone of our own stories. “We don’t have to say the same thing because it will always match. If we are loving, respectful and passionate in our creations, then there will always be an interesting conversation. “[M.Wanders]

    We remain already anxious for the next surprise. The next conversation! Virginia Cucchi 

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