The queen of design Shaynna Blaze takes us behind the scenes of her new show.
Earlier this year I went on an adventure to Italy for the Milan trade fair and to get inspiration for my new lighting collection. We travelled not just to the trade fair but the streets of Milan and the waters of Lake Como. As it was my first time in Italy it was a world of wonderment for me. Italy is about connecting with your surrounds, your history but most of all the people in your everyday life and exploring new experiences.
Lake Como is close to the Swiss border and is a mix of Italian style and fanciful Swiss architecture and as you traverse on the water in an elegant timber water taxi you look out to the hills dotted with ancient roman ruins, it is very hard to take in all at once. A slight mist sits on the water and hills in the mornings, that gives a very mysterious and when it lifts to a cloudless sunny day the dancing ripples of the water put on a show that stops you in your tracks. No wonder the Italians take a midday break for a couple of hours, as there is so much beauty to take in. It has definitely left it’s mark on me not only visually but it reminded me how easy it is to generate a sense of peace inside you by just being still for a moment.
I am constantly asked to advise on design and forecasts and just like you, I too look to other specialists in the industry when I need advice and answers for my own research. Milan was all about discovery and so I sought some experts in the industry; Jeanne Marie Cilento, Editor-in-chief for Design and Art Magazine and Rossana Orlandi creator of Rosano Orlandi Gallery.
Jeanne Marie Cilento – Jeanne-Marie is an English/Australian Designer living in Italy and with her husband now live in Rome an work from Milan while travelling the world reporting on art and fashion while also producing and directing films : A true power couple.
One of the biggest things Jeanne-Marie said with Italians is they want their art to be ‘poetry in motion’, giving them a connection to their art and feeling it is part of their life and surroundings. This really resonated with me and is something we can all stop and think about for our homes of how close and connected we feel to our surroundings.
Rosano Orlandi is one of the most magical people I have ever met. Her energy and zest for life is truly contagious and to interview this Doyenne of design while sitting in an oversized nest with large eggs truly says how she lives her life with spirit. Art is subjective and it takes an instinctive eye to know what can work and Rosano ‘feels’ her choices. Unless it moves her physically it doesn’t make it into her gallery, they must speak to her to find their way into her gallery. Something we should all do when selecting art of any sort, if the piece moves you it has a personal dialogue to you and will always hold something special to you no matter what fads and trends move through your life.
The Mooi exhibitions was amazing. Think monster chairs, oversized prints and rugs, mixing complicated with sleek and simplistic. This exhibition was all about being exaggerated in scale, colour and light. Dark and moody lighting working with bold colour and pattern choices. That is the way to work a dark room to your advantage, rather than thinking you always have to make it light and bright go for bold and deep colours then have striking lighting pieces that create a particular mood and energy to the room.
As a designer there is so much to take away from exhibitions but you can get just as big experiences by taking in the surroundings, the architecture and the people you meet along the way.
See behind the scenes of Shaynna's adventure below!