Nilufar turns its Depot space into a pop-up bookshop

Nilufar Depot in Milan opens Bookings, a pop-up bookshop within the design gallery

Nilufar turns its Depot space into a pop-up bookshop
Designed by Milanese studio King, Nilufar Depot's pop up bookshop features blue shelving by Situèr and furniture from the gallery, including Le Bambole chaise longue by Mario Bellini, manufactured by B&B Italia and a low table by Ettore Sottsass, manufactured by Poltronova
(Image credit: Simone Furio)

Milanese design gallery Nilufar Depot has launched Bookings, a pop-up bookshop (until 27 February 2022) designed by local studio Kings, with shelving by Situèr and a selection of art and design books from independent publishers. 

‘Over the past years, we have been engulfed in books, it was a compulsion, an obsession,’ says gallerist Nina Yashar, who opened the Viale Lancetti outpost in 2015, in what was previously a storage space for the gallery. In the years since its opening, Nilufar Depot has hosted large-scale exhibitions, including an impressive display of Lina Bo Bardi and Brazilian modernism in the main central space, as well as smaller curated corners of modern and contemporary design over its three floors. 

Nilufar Depot bookshop

Interior of Nilufar Depot with concrete floors, blue bookcases on the left and red velvet lounge chairs on the right

Le Bambole chaise longue by Mario Bellini, manufactured by B&B Italia. Low table by Ettore Sottsass, manufactured by Poltronova. Behind the shelving is an Off Cut Lino table by Martino Gamper

(Image credit: Simone Furio)

Inspired by the Depot’s warehouse-like architecture, Kings designers Federica Perazzoli and Daniele Innamorato created an installation featuring blue bookcases from Italian brand Situèr. The installation is meant to create what the designers call a ‘Russian Doll effect’: the gallery, which, they explain, is a container of design and art, hosts another container of books, which in turn contain culture. They imagine this to be the core of a series of creative interactions between the gallery space, its furniture pieces, the books and visitors. 

The books and magazines in the selection – from contemporary publishers such as Walther König, Roma Publications, Mousse, and Nero – cover topics including architecture, design, art, photography and fashion, and are complemented by the gallery’s furnishings by Afra and Tobia Scarpa, Ettore Sottsass, Mario Bellini and Martino Gamper, and a lighting installation by Milan art gallery Viasaterna.

Art and design books showcased on blue bookcases and a wooden table

Books on Off Cut Lino table by Martino Gamper

(Image credit: Simone Furio)

The project responds to Yashar’s desire to connect with the literary community and to create a wider cultural context for the works in the gallery. ‘I see Depot as an ever-changing space, I believe ‘cross-contamination’ between different worlds is key to fostering creative dialogue in the industry,’ she says.

‘Over the past years, the hall has hosted dinner parties, concerts, DJ sets, amazing artists, performances and a lot more. Together with Kings, we imagined a truly unique cultural space that offers visitors the opportunity to connect with the place itself and the culture contained in it, an inspirational collection of publications and rare books.’ 

Interior of Nilufar Depot with blue bookcases and low desks with books

(Image credit: Simone Furio)

A round table with four chairs at Nilufar Depot

Round table and chairs from the Basilan series, by Afra and Tobia Scarpa, manufactured by B&B Italia

(Image credit: Simone Furio)

Bookings at Nilufar Depot is open until 27 February 2022

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.

With contributions from