Arper booth presented at 56th edition of the Salone Internazionale del Mobile 2017 was designed by Studio MAIO, a Barcelona-based architecture firm specializing in spatial systems founded by Maria Charneco, Alfredo Lérida, Guillermo López e Anna Puigjaner. The architects, for the first time part of Arper creative team, teamed up with Jeannette Altherr – Studio Lievore Altherr – designer and creative director of Arper’s stand concept, with the objective of creating a space that best represents the interaction between architecture and Arper’s collections. A profoundly innovative approach, supported by the stylist studio Stef Bakker and the lighting design studio Cook & Associates.
Studio MAIO designed a system that is defined by a set of simple elements that can be composed and reorganized to best suit the different kinds of spaces in which they are used. These elements are complete structures in themselves, in that they are self-supporting and efficient.
Thanks to this new display system, the space is organized around a large central square leading to many rooms where the products are displayed in ways designed to stimulate interaction. The rooms are accessed primarily from the main square but also connected one another, allowing visitors an experiential visit. Each is a unique space that can be understood both as a room and a “building” within an urban landscape. Rooms are modulated through the simple compression or expansion of space to tell the story of the furniture. Along with unique flooring and walls, one of the most distinctive elements of this project is its ceilings, with their unusual shapes and variable geometries that help to shape the particular character of each room. The spaces become domestic while adapted to the big scale of the fair – a city within the city.
In the first application of the system, a series of spaces enclosing a piazza have been created. The central space is surrounded by a set of interconnected rooms where furniture is shown. Each room has been designed as a space related to its specific content and styling.
The walls and the ceiling of each room change in order to provide a unique character to each one. The spaces become domestic while adapted to the big scale of the fair, forming a sort of a city-within-a-city while the promenade among them shows a changing environment.
In this particular application, the frames have been covered with wood and paint- ed in the interior of the rooms. Wood is the protagonist of the project, a material that gives it a warmer, relaxing and conducive atmosphere and highlights the collections on display.
Each scene is staged with lifelike videos, suggesting the use and character of the space to which they connect.
Spaces designed taking into account the needs applicable to the fair:
- easily accessible areas, free of noise or traffic, allowing people to enjoy the experience of visiting:
- Comfort and functional areas such as meeting rooms and a restaurant where visitors can meet, talk, get inspired and develop their projects in a relaxed environment.
- Functional area for Arper staff as storages and receptions;
- User friendly vignettes where visitors can taste the products:
- Flexibility booth: The project, defined by a set simple and singular forms, opens up infinite reconfigurations of spaces and distribution over times.
- The main material of Arper booth is wood, that was originated from sustainably managed forests,
- Among the styling elements, live plants decorate the booth, which allow to highlight the company's green orientation.
- Arper Booth at the Salone del Mobile 2017 was designed to be reused.
“Together” was Arper’s key theme for the 2017 fair, which translated into the stand design. “Together” is a new perspective that places relationships at the centre of design: the relationship between objects, which are expressed through the synergistic design of shells, bases, accessories, materials and colours; the relationship between objects and space, in which each element is coordinated to the other with flexibility, so as to achieve the best results; and finally, the relationship between spaces and people, expressed through individual choices and customized solutions as a means of self- expression. “Together” strongly sums up the theme of the community: spaces that adapt to new situations and suit the needs of everyday life.
Studio MAIO (Anna Puigjaner, Maria Charneco, Guillermo López, Alfredo Lérida), Jeannette Altherr (Studio Lievore Altherr), Studio Bakker, Cook & Associates, Arper Spa
José Hevia, Salva López and Marco Covi
Arper is a leading Italian company that creates chairs, tables, and furnishings for community, work and home. The company was founded in 1989 as an evolution of a leather artisan enterprise launched by the Feltrin family in the 1980s, distinguished itself right from the start for its innovative products and state of the art processes, as well as for its international approach.
Towards the end of the 1990s, Arper stops producing leather chairs for homes and switches to the contract sector. It begins positioning itself as a B2B company, with a design that privileges style unencumbered by bulky technological features. Soon it begins its partnerships with international designers. These collaborations help define Arper’s identity, drawing inspiration from all over the world to elaborate an original synthesis. Today Arper’s focus is mainly on the contract sector (80% of sales), with products targeted for different uses and market segments.