Rooted in Ukrainian cultural heritage, Faina is a furniture brand by Kyiv-based Yakusha Design. Led by Victoria Yakusha, the brand has now opened a new space in Antwerp, Belgium, a cavernous design gallery set within a historical building in the heart of the city.

The gallery is a location where Yakusha aims to demonstrate her ‘live design’ philosophy, based on a strong connection with nature and history. Following this leitmotif, the two minimalist spaces of the gallery are inspired by the earth, with dark tones and designs featuring archetypal forms and natural, sustainable materials throughout. 

A large basket woven lampshade by Faina hanging over black round dining table and chairs
The ‘Strikha’ pendant lamp over the ‘Ztista’ table and ‘Toptun’ chairs

‘We respected the spirit of the space, its history, and didn’t reconstruct much. We left the authentic ceiling, with old beams in their original state. For the walls we just used natural paint so they could breathe,’ explains Yakusha. 

The gallery is a backdrop for some of the designer’s best pieces, from softly formed sofas and hand-sculpted lamps to the accessories collection, defined by a series of ceramics and glass pieces displayed on a prominent aluminium bookcase conceived for the space. 

At Faina gallery, a black round tapestry hangs on the grey wall over a low black cupboard
A bespoke tapestry made on an ancient Carpathian loom, hanging on the wall over a black cabinet

The gallery makes its debut with new pieces that explore Ukrainian craft traditions, cultural heritage and symbols. The ‘Strikha’ lamp echoes traditional straw roofs, while the ‘Bandura’ vase is inspired by a folk instrument. 

The colours as well as the material palette – clay, wood and wool in dark shades – refer to the hues of Ukrainian soil, and a further connection with Yakusha’s home is made through a tapestry depicting the symbol of earth according to the Trypillian culture, hand-woven on an ancient Carpathian loom. 

A large round mirror hangs on the wall over an upholstered bench by Faina
‘Plyn’ banquette

‘With Faina we are driven by the mission to pass on history. We bring artisanal craftsmanship into modern design and revive ancient cultural symbols,’ says Yakusha. ‘Made in a sustainable manner, by hand, primitive archetypal objects tell the story of my land. This is what gives them energy, meaning, and soul.’ §

A living room setting with armchairs, sofa, coffee table and three lamps in the corner
From left: ‘Toptun’ armchairs, ‘Soniah’ floor lamps, ‘Plyn’ sofa and ‘Soniah’ coffee table
Three grey ceramic lamps with yellow lights

‘Soniah’ floor lamps