As art director of his eponymous Italian furniture company, Giulio Cappellini has spent more than three decades transforming the design world – and he’s certainly not finished. As part of his role as Guest Editor of Wallpaper's October 2023 issue, Cappellini explored a series of Future Landscapes for domestic and public spaces, creating a series of scenarios in collaboration with his son, photographer Giovanni Cappellini, that explore his vision.
During London Design Festival 2023, Wallpaper* co-hosted a talk at Istituto Marangoni, where Cappellini discussed the theme of Future Landscapes with Editor-in-Chief Sarah Douglas and designers Tom Dixon and Jay Osgerby of Barber Osgerby.
Giulio Cappellini's future landscapes
Cappellini calls himself a 'designer of companies', and as a result of his role, he spends a lot of time pondering about the ongoing transformation of home and office landscapes, and the new ways we are inhabiting our most intimate spaces.
The opportunity to be a Wallpaper* Guest Editor allowed him to explore these concepts across the pages, creating a domestic scenario and an office that expand his vision. 'I don’t think design is elitist,’ he says.
For the two scenarios he created, he mixed genres, eras and prices, citing the pleasure in putting together a space step by step and the accessibility of good design.
The images are defined by immateriality, with the functions of each room blending into each other, two spaces defined by freedom. 'The thing that characterises today's interiors is the freedom of the end consumer, the possibility to mix everything,' he says. 'In the past, people wanted to live in the same home, work in the same office as their friends, now they want to be in a space that completely reflects their own identity. This freedom is really the defining concept of today.'
It's the same approach he has in his own home: 'I say my home is a chaos, like me: full of different products, by different people, from different companies, parts of the world and periods. It reflects my idea of a multicultural world.'
‘We can speak of a new domestic nomadism,’ he adds, citing his decision not to have walls dividing the spaces. ‘In the past, each room had a precise role; today, everything is much more fluid. The kitchen is a multifunctional space where you also host, the living room has become the agora of the home. Homes have really become borderless.'
The same concept was applied to his office concept: a space without desks, without a meeting room, but with designs that are arranged to accommodate the contemporary need for flexibility. ‘The workspace has become more human,’ he observes. ‘Offices used to be black and white, now we have introduced colour, we work flexibly, we have a blend of contract and domestic furniture. With these images, I wanted to convey the freedom that I think is necessary in design.’
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Rosa Bertoli was born in Udine, Italy, and now lives in London. Since 2014, she has been the Design Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees design content for the print and online editions, as well as special editorial projects. Through her role at Wallpaper*, she has written extensively about all areas of design. Rosa has been speaker and moderator for various design talks and conferences including London Craft Week, Maison & Objet, The Italian Cultural Institute (London), Clippings, Zaha Hadid Design, Kartell and Frieze Art Fair. Rosa has been on judging panels for the Chart Architecture Award, the Dutch Design Awards and the DesignGuild Marks. She has written for numerous English and Italian language publications, and worked as a content and communication consultant for fashion and design brands.
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