Swarovski, the Austrian producer of luxury crystals, launched Atelier Swarovski Home, a new luxury home accessories brand at 2016 Salone Milan, during a curated exhibition at the Palazzo Cagnola, via Cusani 5 in Milan’s Brera design district.
Atelier Swarovski Home features a range of collections designed in collaboration with luminaries from the art, design, architecture and fashion worlds.
Swarovski home seeks to redefine the role of art within the home and to embrace Swarovski crystal as a medium in a new light, the objects intersect where vision and art meet in decorative form.
The exhibition took place in the neo-classical Palazzo Cagnola, and was exhibition designed by Piuarch Spa for Atelier Swarovski Home
Organized by designer, and arranged in an engaging display of light and reflection, crystalline forms phrased as vases, centerpieces, and interactive objet d’art culminated in a debut of a collection whose ultimate purpose is to re-imagine home décor.
Each design element is in dialogue with the late neo-classical architecture of the Palazzo, including the ceiling frescos and the terrazzo floors.
The exhibit engaged the public through a game of reflections, inviting the visitor on a journey through the world of Atelier Swarovski Home via a series of mirrored installations and materials, creating a subtle backdrop for the objects.
“This is a natural evolution for Atelier Swarovski and a great opportunity to showcase the art of crystal cutting in a range of designs and forms”
“ Atelier Swarovski Home is an exciting new brand that will offer the ultimate in luxury crystal home décor with an ultra-modern design aesthetic. We are delighted to be collaborating once again with so many incredible creative talents on these beautiful objects for the home ” ………. Nadja Swarovski
From the late Zaha Hadid to Tord Boontje, Atelier Swarovski works directly with designers to translate their forward-thinking design DNA and technical expertise into collections of luxurious and covetable Swarovski crystal table top objects and home accessories.
From the unmistakable aesthetic signatures of Daniel Libeskind, and Aldo Bakker to the captivating new ideas of Raw Edges, the new collection is a vivid reminder of the infinite creative possibilities of crystal in design.
From the mixed media pieces of designer Kim Thomé to the crystallized alphabet of Ron Arad, the pieces from Atelier Swarovski Home are luxurious, distilled objects which inspire, engage, and express a modern point of view.
Architectural and design elements are seen throughout the collections, unique to each designer’s specific vision.
Categories include home entertainment, trays and containers, centerpieces, wedding and gift items, home library, and games.
The collection mixes materials like marble, metal, and resin together with crystal.
The crystal work lies at the cutting edge of innovation, integrating newly developed technologies, like crystal printing (a permanent form of laser-jet print on crystal), and the revolutionary Wave Cut technique (a combination of computer technology with mechanical engineering to cut curved forms in crystal).
These groundbreaking techniques, unique to Swarovski, show the design possibilities of crystal. Atelier Swarovski Home is a vivid reminder of the infinite creative possibilities of crystal in design —and leverages the company’s most recent innovations.
Swarovski has been a champion of art, both in the fixed form of installations, sculptures and other artistic objects and creations for nearly a century, as well as the more ephemeral decorative arts.
Falling under the Atelier Swarovski aegis, an enterprise launched in 2007 to create fashion accessories with international designers like Viktor & Rolf, Jonathan Saunders, Maison Margiela, Mary Katrantzou, Jean Paul Gaultier and Karl Lagerfeld, the Atelier Swarovski Home branch will operate in the same manner: bringing to life design pieces by the world’s most respected designers as well as emerging international talents, celebrating the brand’s unique crystal artistry.
The Swrovski Home collection will enlarge this business as part of a re-positioning as a luxury lifestyle brand with a range of functional and decorative design objects for the home.
Launch day – Designer press interviews
Swarovski Home launch night – exclusive V.I.P Dinner
Atelier Swarovski 2016 Collections
To make a dazzling splash, the crystal maker enlisted support from an all-star line-up, many of whom had already collaborated with the brand on architecture and design projects.
The inaugural collection includes:
Atelier Swarovski Home collections will be available from Sept 2016, with pricing for the products ranging from $170 to $22,800
Designers and their Products
Moving beyond the design zeitgeist of the times, Aldo Bakker is a designer whose work is a testament to that which refuses to assimilate – beyond the culture and sociology of his era, his work is at once singular, powerful and surprising in its beauty.
Each creation brings attention to the pure vision behind the design, a balance of functional and beautiful.
“ Every facet should be meaningful ” ………… Aldo Bakker
Aldo Bakker, for example, chose to work with a range of Italian marbles in different colours, cut by the same craftsmen who work with crystal in Wattens.
Two marble and one crystal ‘supports’, as the designer calls them, hold a single stem at the centre.
Born in the Netherlands in 1971 to Dutch designers Gija Bakker and Emmy Van Leersum, Bakker grew up in an environment infused with a strong aesthetic sensibility.
Deciding against traditional education and instead following his own path, he was first trained as a silversmith working on commission.
Bakker set up his own studio in 1994, later moving into furniture and product design.
Bakker is a professor at the Design Academy at Eindhoven in the Netherlands.
This is his first collaboration with Swarovski.
Architecture & The City
Angled, articulate and tectonic, American architect Daniel Libeskind’s buildings act as a large scale invocation of cultural memory.
Coming to prominence with his poignant design for the Jewish Museum in Berlin, the overarching theme in his built works is memorializing and remembrance.
A true citizen of the world, Libeskind has moved between countries eighteen times.
In 2003, his practice Studio Libeskind won the competition to rebuild the World Trade Center in New York.
This is his first collaboration with Swarovski.
“ A crystal is a metaphor for life because the form, the shape, the idea of a crystal has to do with an inversion of surface and depth ” …. Daniel Libeskind
For ‘Architecture & the City’, Daniel Libeskind presents a championship-size chess set, whose pieces celebrate several of Libeskind’s most iconic buildings.
With a board showing maps of Milan and New York (the two cities where he lives and works), the set uses materials from the worlds of construction – concrete and marble – as well as luxury: silver from Wiener Silber Manufactur and Swarovski crystal.
The two kings are represented by the Freedom Tower in New York City.
Design duo Patrik Fredrikson and Ian Stallard have been at the forefront of British avant-garde design since they began collaborating in 1995.
Their Space Flower jewellery collection for Atelier Swarovski uses the simple contrast of sharp Swarovski crystals and soft metal domes to accentuate the beauty of the crystals and magnify the light they reflect.
With a suitably restrained color palette, these pieces work either alone or grouped together in bouquets, and are at once elegantly feminine and strikingly contemporary.
Their previous design collaborations with Swarovski include the dramatic ‘Prologue’ – a golden ring over four meters in diameter and inset with over 8,000 crystals to mimic the shimmering sun.
Stallard’s pieces have been acquired by institutions such as Victoria and Albert Museum, and shown at the Design Museum in London, MOMA and the Museum of Art and Design in New York.
“ Crystals radiate power, elegance and 21st century femininity ” ……. Fredrikson Stallard
‘Glaciarium,’ Fredrikson Stallard’s first collection for Atelier Swarovski Home presents a series of centerpieces inspired by the naked form of untouched, raw crystal.
Frederikson Stallard’s pure crystal shapes combine raw forms with precision cuts in a tabletop collection;
Each piece is cast in crystal and then faceting is applied to certain sections, combining precision cutting with the material’s natural structures and surface
Plinths & Donuts
Known for his playful, geometric approach to design, Norwegian-born Kim Thomé graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2012 and runs his studio from East London.
His work balances between installation and object, and mixes graphic elements and optical play to explore reflection, geometry and color.
Thomé unveiled ‘Zotem,’ his first collaboration with Swarovski, at London’s V&A museum.
The sculpture was 18 meters high, embedded with more than 600 bespoke crystals, and was later shown at Design Shanghai.
“Pairing crystal with a natural material really makes it pop” …….. Kim Thomé
Kim Thomé’s design for ‘Plinth’ features a heavy stainless-steel base in a variety of heights, with a crystal halo perched on top.
‘Donuts’ is a series of palm-sized candle-holders made of crystals, each with a different color effect.
There are four in the series.
Playful, nonconformist yet ultimately utilitarian, couple Yael Mer and Shay Alkalay’s creations play with illusion and form.
The Israeli duo met while studying at the College of Art in London under designer Ron Arad, and in 2007 set up their studio Raw Edges in London.
Their furniture, products and installations have attracted commissions for Cappellini, Established & Sons, and Stella McCartney among others.
This is their first collaboration with Swarovski.
“You see something and you’re not sure how it works or what’s behind it — and that’s inspiring.” ……. Raw Edges
Raw Edges showcase a new laser-jet Swarovski crystal printing technique in ‘Printed’, seen across a range of variating centerpieces for the home.
Layering colorful patterns on the interior of the objects, designs are distorted and augmented by the crystal faceting.
When the crystals sit together, the reflections and layering reveal additional images of even greater depth.
Alphabets & Numbers
One of Britain’s best-known designers, Ron Arad’s constant experimentation with the possibilities of materials such as steel, aluminum or polyamide and his radical re-conception of the form and structure of furniture has put him at the forefront of contemporary design and architecture.
He is an innovator on the edge of constant (and consistent) reinvention.
Based in London since the mid-1970s, Arad’s work has ranged in scale from bottles to museums, with some of his most captivating creations being commissioned by Swarovski, including the Crystal Palace initiative.
Arad is a Professor Emeritus of the Royal College of Art, and was elected a Royal Academician in 2013.
Ron Arad’s large, decorative letters, cut from crystal following a new typeface created by the Israeli designer and inspired by the house’s crystal figurines;
In a new font designed for the project, Ron Arad introduces a crystal incarnation of the numbers 0 to 9 and the 26 letters of the alphabet titled ‘Alphabet & Numbers’.
Precision-cut and standing either 22cm or 13.5cm tall, the characters also translate into unique square-form bookends where each figure has been cut from a crystal mass.
A consummate pragmatist, designer Tomás Alonso’s designs have an elegant functionality that pairs simple elements with complex structures.
Born in Vigo, Spain, Tomás Alonso has been travelling since the age of 19 in pursuit of his career and international design inspiration.
In 2006 he co-founded the design collective OKAY Studio with 5 other graduates from the RCA
His practice, based in North East London, works in furniture, product, lighting, interior and exhibition design with clients ranging from international producers to selected design galleries and museums.
Amongst other awards he was chosen as the 2013 Designer of the Year by AD magazine in Spain, and Young Designer of the Year by Elle Deco Japan in 2012 and Elle Deco Spain in 2011.
“A Swarovski piece for the home will never just be an everyday object. In a way it’s almost like jewelery for the house” — Tomas Alonso
Tomás Alonso’s series ‘Prism’ features pieces which are constructed from crystal and marble prisms to create multifaceted, mesmerizing objects.
Playing with optical illusion, the color shade and perspective changes as the one’s gaze moves around the object.
An artist as much as a craftsman, Dutch designer Tord Boontje is known as one of the most original and innovative product and furniture designers working today.
Boontje set up his studio in London in 1996, and has since worked on products that include lighting, textiles, ceramics and furniture.
His work can be found in major collections such as the Victoria and Albert Museum, Design Museum and Tate Modern in London and MoMA and Cooper Hewitt in New York.
Alongside his other pieces, his coveted romantic paper designs earned him widespread visibility and commercial popularity.
He began collaborating with Swarovski in 2002, and his signature fluid forms derived from nature can be found on work ranging from the luminescent cherry branch ‘Blossom’ to the ‘Stellar Doma’ pendant light, a celebration of the night sky.
“ Swarovski colors could come from the other side of space, or from the future ” ……………. Tord Boontje
In ‘Luxe Orbit”, Boontje presents a series that includes lanterns, wine coolers, nut bowls and a caviar set in glass and corian with crystals scattered over the polished surfaces of ovals and spheres.
The series has a futuristic, science-fiction twist, referencing star formations and the colors seen in space photography.
At the crux of architecture, design, and the avant-garde is the internationally recognized architect Zaha Hadid.
Known for her technical prowess as well as her steadfast, pioneering approach to female developed architecture, the late Zaha Hadid was a designer whose career was forged from vision and unmatched talent.
Founder of her eponymous company Zaha Hadid Architects, her work spanned the interrelated fields of urbanism, architecture and design.
Ranging from furniture to city planning, Hadid’s aesthetic encompassed all scales of design with a nod towards the warped, anti-gravitational space of Russian avant-garde painting and sculpture.
“ I wanted the piece to convey Swarovski’s ethos not just through its design, but through materiality ” …. Zaha Hadid
A lifelong innovator and enthusiast for new technologies, her collaborations with Swarovski date back to 2007, with projects ranging from spiralling light installations (Crystal Palace, Salone del Mobile 2008) to the sculptural jewelry collection ‘Glace’ (Atelier Swarovski 2010).
Credited with having developed her own architectural language, her signature fluid, organic shapes are visible in her Glace collection for Atelier Swarovski.
Evocative, molten shapes ooze slowly over the skin in black, white and flame tones.
Deep within each piece are set tiny blue, white and red crystals that glisten like bubbles below the surface, enhancing the organic designs.
For her collaboration with Atelier Swarovski Home, ‘Crista’, Zaha Hadid debuted a collection of imposing centerpieces in crystal and metal.
Inspired by the process crystallization which occurs in nature, the design is also notable for its use of Swarovski’s new Wave Cut technology, which launches in 2016.
In 1895, Daniel Swarovski, a Bohemian inventor and visionary, moved to the village of Wattens, Tyrol in Austria, with his newly-invented machine for cutting and polishing crystal jewelry stones.
From this beginning that revolutionised the fashion world, Swarovski has grown to be the world’s leading producer of precision-cut crystal for fashion, jewelry and more recently lighting, architecture and interiors.
Today, the company, still family-owned and run by 5th generation family members, has a global reach with some 25,000 employees, a presence in over 120 countries and a turnover in 2012 of 2.38 billion Euros.
Swarovski comprises two major businesses, one producing and selling loose elements to the industry and the other creating design-driven finished products.
Swarovski crystals have become an essential ingredient of international design. Since 1965 the company has also catered to the fine jewelry industry with precision-cut genuine gemstones and created stones.
Showing the creativity that lies at the heart of the company, Swarovski’s own brand lines of accessories, jewelry and home décor items are sold through more than 2,350 retail outlets worldwide.
The Swarovski Crystal Society has close to 300,000 members across the world, keen collectors of the celebrated crystal figurines.
And in Wattens, Swarovski Kristallwelten, the multi-media crystal museum, was opened in 1995 as a celebration of Swarovski’s universe of innovation and inspiration.