‘I wanted to be open to be inspired by an emotion that comes from colour rather than a specific time period, person or theme,’ explains architect and designer Achille Salvagni of his new furniture collection, currently on display at his London atelier. The discreetly opulent showcase, entitled ‘A Study in Green’, includes a writing desk and lighting pieces reminiscent of an Italian 1950s aesthetic.
The Rome-born designer was initially inspired by a photograph of an aerial view of Osaka after the bombing in World War II. ‘The image was like a graphic print; it was grids of burnt out spaces and reminded me of this wood, Louro faia, that we had started working with,’ Salvagni explains. ‘Every time I saw a sample of the wood, it made me think of that photograph so I felt I needed to verbalise this haunting memory into a work.’
Among Achille Salvagni's new pieces is the 'Osaka' desk
The result of this exploration is the 'Osaka' desk, a geometric piece with slanted legs and an asymmetrical top crafted from wood and bronze. A sense of nostalgia underpins Salvagni’s works, in part due to his Roman roots and curiosity for his city’s history. To wit, his collections feature onyx, marble, bronze and wood generously; he says, ‘When these materials were used in Ancient Rome, they were never integrated or mixed. I love marrying these materials in different proportions.'
The title Salvagni chose for this body of work is a play of words with a subtle double meaning. ‘Olive green was always used in classic interiors for libraries as it is conducive to concentration and the relaxation of the mind,’ he muses, ‘but this has now also become my study of the colour green.’