Watch Studio Pepe’s otherworldly design manifesto

Watch Studio Pepe’s otherworldly design manifesto

The Milanese design duo have gathered their inspirations and pieces from the past year into a magical video

Designers Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara Di Pinto of Milanese design practice Studio Pepe spent the past year wondering about ‘the use of public or domestic spaces and our ever changing relationship with objects.’

The result of these explorations is summed up in a poetic video manifesto titled Desiderio. ‘In these challenging times, questions are necessary and of a different kind,’ they say. ‘The sociality and the use of collective spaces have radically changed. For this reason, this year Studiopepe focused the attention on a concept related to a more mental dimension.’

Watch: Studio Pepe’s Desiderio


Meaning ‘desire’, the origin of the word ‘desiderio’ intrigued the designers: ‘The word is composed of the Latin prefix de-, meaning "lack of", and the word sidus,
 which means "star",’ they note. ‘To desire something literally means, “to lack stars”, to “feel a lack of stars”, or in other words to feel that something is wanting, and therefore foster a sentiment of passionate seeking,’ a feeling that well encapsulates much of 2020 so far.

The word became the central focus of the pair’s ‘imagined constellation’, a compendium of their most recent projects and an opportunity to present them away from a physical design week setting. ‘[The project] involved formal research and research on materials, analysis of signs and language, all aspects that are characteristic of our design vision. It’s no longer a physical place that reflects our projects, but an imaginary architecture.’

A sketch from Desiderio

Located in a mysterious place (a modernist structure dropped onto a desert on earth, or on the surface of a new planet), the imagined building contains Studio Pepe’s rugs designed for CC Tapis, lights and furnishings for Baxter and pieces for Gallotti e Radice among others. Images of the space are interspersed with a rich collection of visual references, ranging from classical sculpture to contemporary architecture, as well as line drawings by Di Pinto and Lelli Mami. 

‘De-siderio is what moves our soul and keeps us constantly curious,’ they say. ‘In the passionate and very human research for conjunction and beauty.’

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