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The Studio of Antonella Dedini

By • Jul 21, 2013

The studio of architect and interior designer Antonella Dedini is located in Milan, Italy.

The space is comfortable and inviting, the perfect place to let the imagination flow.

The Studio of Antonella Dedini:

“In a historic Milanese building, just a few meters from Da Vinci’s Last Supper, architect Antonella Dedini has created a work environment in which the modern and the future exchange ideas about design.

The clean geometry of the spaces frames the furniture and works of art, (some original, others re-releases), designed by the most significant artists of the 1900s: Scarpa, Mollino, Albini, Zanuso, Ponti, Eames, Aalto, Sapper, and Santachiara, among others.  

This special “collection” has been gathered together into a single work space. The pieces live as usable objects on a daily basis and not as motionless works in a museum: This is perhaps the best design that an architect can invent to bring his/her studio to life and to ferry Italian design from the 1900s to the experimentation of the new millennium.

The Dedini studio, which covers a surface area of 80 square meters, was obtained from the division of a larger apartment, which until the 1980s had been the studio home of Herbert Ohl — a famous German architect and designer, as well as the last director of the Ulm School of Design.

“I’ve obviously put my tastes into this studio, and my passion for combining history and the avant-garde. The space in which a person lives or works must be both a receptacle for memories that give meaning and nourishment, as well as a “recycling plant” of the contemporary – a filter formed by one’s tastes and personal interests.”

The doors and cabinets, handles and floors, the vintage kitchen and the panelling are the spatial stage onto which books and photographs, one-offs and design icons, paintings and technological devices have been skilfully distributed.

Standing out among the one-offs are those from her husband’s family collection. Vittorio Sportoletti Baduel is a writer and traveller and grandson of the engineer Vittorio Bonadè Bottino (trusted designer for Giovanni Agnelli, the founder of Fiat, for whom he created the Lingotto upper circuit, the Torino Mirafiori plant, the hotels at Sestriere and many FIAT buildings from 1929 to 1975).

Alongside some ‘masterpieces’ of modern workmanship – two pieces of furniture designed for the engineer, built by Merlotti Woodworks in 1932, the green ‘Barilotto’ armchair and two seats of the same year and historical objects of design, like the Luminator lamp by Pietro Chiesa or the Margherita wicker armchair by Franco Albini, is the popular Billy bookcase from Ikea, resized and painted. This proximity allows us to imagine how the Milanese architect puts together spaces and harmonizes time in her work.

Another typical element of the life and mood of the studio is the eating and coffee break area, where the previous modular kitchen has been maintained. This was chosen by Herbert Ohl in his time and is white with a grey-black granite bench top. Designed by Luigi Massoni for Boffi in 1972, (displayed at the MOMA in New York).

“I don’t believe in trends. I only believe in people living in different ways, with different perceptions of the concept of living. Today a good designer must know how to understand and embrace different cultural visions*, and only a multidisciplinary approach can lead to a convincing design interpretation. As during the Renaissance, the architect must now take on the role of “art director”, be able to create a dialogue between the arts and disciplines at various levels, and recover their “sixth sense” for everyday design. We need to tear down the various barriers separating sculpture and architecture, designing things and designing interiors, and exterior planning and contemporary art. Wherever possible, an “interior and living designer” must formulate a vision that’s easy to read, and find the right language to go along with or against the complexities of our time.””

Photos by: Alessandro Belgiojoso

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