‘Try to imagine a world without music. It’s the same thing you would experience in a world without decoration,’ says Barnaba Fornasetti. It’s this thinking that inspired a new series of furniture items from Italian decorative arts company Fornasetti. Titled Don Giovanni, the range was conceived as part of a broader creative project aimed at promoting familiarity with opera and bringing it to the attention of the public. The first stage of the project took place in the winter of 2016 with the production of the opera Il Dissoluto Punito, ossia il Don Giovanni, one of Mozart’s finest masterpieces. The venture will continue in autumn 2017 with the official launch of the CD, closing the gap between the Austrian composer and the surrealist vision of the Milanese atelier.
The new collection takes creative direction from the visual universe created for the opera production. Calling to mind legends of provocateur and seducer Don Juan – the fictional character Mozart was inspired by – the stage decorations referenced the main themes of the composition and included women’s faces, hands, masks, jugglers and surreal forests. For the Don Giovanni furniture range, all of this iconography has been deliberately reinterpreted and reorganised to demonstrate how the Fornasetti style can be used in a multidisciplinary creative exploration that spans decoration to theatre, music and design.
The collection comprises a variety of pieces, including limited-edition furniture items, accessories and chinaware. Cilindro, Tamburo and Vetrina are containers distinguished by their cylindrical form and all-round adornment. A sinuously shaped chair uses the silhouette of Don Juan and a screen, like a theatre wing, manages to transform the visual temperature of the surrounding space. Various accessories such as trays, magazine racks and paper baskets as well as plates, vases and other porcelain and glass table decorations complete the series.
Each object is a perfect expression of the balance between art and craft. Their expressiveness and dual nature – on one hand functional and on the other, cultural and poetic – gives the pieces in this collection the ability to provide spaces with a visual rhythm and storytelling style that are vividly theatrical.
The Don Giovanni collection will be presented in Milan at the Fornasetti Store in November 2017.
Discover more of the fascinating design world of Milan, here.