Handmade X: With Love, the projects

Handmade X: With Love, the projects

For our annual salute to craft and creativity, we bring together the best designers, artists, and manufacturers to make one-off wonders. Here, browse all the fruits of Handmade 2019. Photography: Alberto Strada / Wallpaper* Handmade X

‘Compasso’ bench by Gustavo Martini and Testi

‘Compasso’ bench
Gustavo Martini and Testi

The curve of this giant bench, designed by Gustavo Martini, is shaped to encourage sitters to move closer together. What’s more, its polished Grigio Carnico marble – formed in Testi’s workshop in Veneto – creates a slippery surface that makes it virtually impossible to keep your neighbour at arm’s length. ‘Love brings people close together, and this bench makes them stay close together,’ says Martini. 

Gustavo Martini
Born in Rio de Janeiro, Gustavo Martini now lives in Milan, having completed a master’s degree at the city’s Istituto Marangoni. The designer’s recent projects range from a collaboration with Giulio Cappellini to an installation at Rome’s MAXXI museum. gustavomartini.com

Testi’s first workshop in Sant’Ambrogio di Valpolicella, a town between Lake Garda and Verona, was founded by the three sons of marble quarry owner Piero Testi. Today, the brand is one of the leading Italian producers in the natural stone sector. testigroup.com

‘Across the Board’ mirror by Laura Lees and Another Brand

‘Across the Board’ mirror
Laura Lees and Another Brand

Laura Lees’ design has a two-pronged inspiration. Firstly, she looked to German film The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant, having felt a resonance with the movie’s romantic narrative. Secondly, she made patterns based on bricks and mortar – and eventually merged the two concepts to create a mirror that features two embracing figures disguised within architectural textures. Typical of Lees’ trompe l’oeil aesthetic, the hidden detail calls for a double-take.

Laura Lees
Laura Lees began her creative career studying tapestry at Duncan of Jordanstone college in Dundee, and embroidery is at the heart of her artistic and commercial practice. Her eclectic style has seen her work with collaborators ranging from fashion brands Sibling and Giles to musicians The Strokes and Courtney Love, as well as designers such as Bethan Laura Wood. laura-lees.com

Another Brand
Another Brand pairs manufacturer and designer together to create collections of furniture, which can be altered to fit any specification. Creatively led by designer Theo Williams, the London-based company currently collaborates with the likes of Studiomama and Emile Jones. anotherbrand.co.uk

‘Amaranth’ by  Lars Beller Fjetland and Bottega Ghianda

Lars Beller Fjetland and Bottega Ghianda

These beautifully crafted ducks were inspired by the Korean tradition of gifting newlyweds a pair of wooden waterbirds to symbolise their nuptials. With the help of the Bottega Ghianda craftsmen, Lars Beller Fjetland has carved, shaped and polished his own flock of (featherless) friends, creating a design that has more to it than first meets the eye. Each features a secret compartment for concealing a single wooden ring. While one duck is made from maple, two have been produced from amaranth – a species of wood also known as purpleheart, which gradually changes colour with the passing of time.

Lars Beller Fjetland
Having spent his childhood on the west coast of Norway, Lars Beller Fjetland developed a taste for natural materials. He graduated from the Bergen National Academy of the Arts in 2012, and now specialises in the creation of functional, Scandinavian-style objects. beller.no

Bottega Ghianda
Italian master woodworker Bottega Ghianda has a rich history of creating fine furniture dating back to the 19th century. Now, under creative director Michele De Lucchi, the company continues to develop collections alongside designers such as Naoto Fukasawa, Jean Nouvel and Carl Magnusson. bottegaghianda.com

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