A Milan apartment for an electronic music composer combines work and pleasure

A project by M2Atelier for DJ and music producer Stephan Jolk features a sombre material palette in an apartment conceived around a specially-built music box

A Milan apartment for an electronic music composer
(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Milanese architects Marco Bonelli and Marijana Radovic of design studio M2Atelier have created an apartment interior for local DJ and electronic music producer Stephan Jolk. A minimalist, cavernous space, the home, explain the architects, is ‘a contemporary, cosmopolitan space, neutral and essential enough to allow the client to carve out a niche for freedom, peace and quiet needed to foster his concentration and creative flow.’

Music box inside Milanese apartment for a DJ

Music box with textile clad walls

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Clad in eco leather on the outside with internal acoustic textile-covered walls, a music box is the heart of the home, with a slim window to the outside and internal views of the living area. Say the architects: ‘the centre of attention and the development of the entire floor plan is this perfect cube, a soundproof box for composition and recording around which all the flows and movement of the home would revolve.’

With the music box at the centre of Jolk’s attention, the rest of the apartment was designed as a tabula rasa, explain the architects, with a material palette setting the tone for a sombre mood, featuring a desaturated ‘sawcut’ oak parquet on the floors and thin strips of wood on the ceilings throughout. Acid-etched steel columns and walls complete the space.

Dining room in milanese apartment for a dj

Table by Lema, chairs by KFF, lamp by Vibia. On the table: vases by Pierre Cardin and Ettore Sottsass for Bitossi

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Similarly, colours are kept neutral, with greys and blacks punctuated by rare drops of red (such as on the legs of the dining table by Lema). Everything in the house has been carefully selected to complement the house’s aesthetic, from the low, minimal sofas in the two living rooms (by Molteni & C and Poliform) to the vintage pieces that include a 1970s armchair by Luigi Saccardo for Arrmet or a 1980s Gabriele Mucchi for Zanotta. 

The apartment’s functionality is enhanced by bespoke designs, including a kitchen by Dada and a walk-in closet by Molteni. 

Bespoke kitchen by Dada in milanese apartment for a DJ

Bespoke kitchen by Dada

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

The home, the architects explain, is a succession of ‘flexible spaces to move around freely, thanks in part to the full-height sliding diaphragms that sit perfectly flush with the walls, simultaneously separating and bringing together the more private rooms.’ The project, they note, was an exercise in proportion and material research, resulting in a perfect symbiosis between work and pleasure set within a modern domestic space.

Apartment for a DJ in Milan

Taccia lamp by Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni for Flos, Genni chaise longue and ottoman by Gabriele Mucchi for Zanotta

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Living room in milanese apartment

Sofa by Poliform and chairs by Moroso. The coffee table is custom made in leather

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Milanese apartment entrance

Mirror-clad entrance column with cantilevered console in Vaxed iron and drawers in eco leather

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Walk in closet in milanese apartment

Custom designed walk-in wardrobe by Molteni&C

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)

Detail of music box inside milanese apartment

Detail of music box, with window facing the apartment 

(Image credit: Lorenzo Pennati)


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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