Bringing two brands together in a thoughtful and creative way is the aim of any collaboration. When those brands are at the top of their respective fields, the end results had better be pretty special. In its new collaboration with Berluti, the esteemed French leathermaker, Bang & Olufsen has been able to push the boundaries of its already impressive materiality, while still preserving the tonal brilliance that has defined the brand since it was established by Svend Olufsen and Peter Bang in 1925. As the nascent B&O was rolling out its first wireless sets, Alessandro Berluti’s company had just entered its third decade. Now part of LVMH, Berluti is headquartered in Paris but still retains manufacturing in northern Italy, specialising in exquisitely hand-tooled leatherwork.
The new collection of six limited-edition products encompasses the whole suite of Bang & Olufsen’s current line-up, from small to large. The collection starts with the Beoplay H95 Berluti Edition, which transforms B&O’s first pair of wireless headphones into a luxurious object with a Venezia leather headband, embossed with the Maison Berluti logo. The H95s also fit into the special ‘Berluti Sound Pouch,’ a bespoke item made from the company’s Signature Canvas that will also hold the second-generation version of the Beosound A1 portable Bluetooth speaker, here shown in its special Berluti edition with dark brown calf leather cord and engraved aluminium. Offering up to 18 hours of battery life, the A1 is a superior piece of portable technology.
The collaboration reaches its acme with the Berluti edition versions of the Beosound Balance, Beovision Harmony and Beolab90. The former is the company’s acclaimed home speaker system, designed by Benjamin Hubert of Layer Design (opens in new tab) and fully integrated with Google Assistant and online streaming services. Berluti have given the elegant cylindrical form a new tactile surface with a hand-patinated brown leather base. The Balance can be paired with the Beovision Harmony, Bang & Olufsen’s flagship 77-inch 4K television (opens in new tab). Incorporating a motorised floor stand, the Harmony is designed to fold down and become more discrete when not in use; the addition of Berluti leather panels enhances the TV’s sculptural qualities.
The star of the collaboration is the Beolab 90, Bang & Olufsen’s flagship speaker, an 8,200-watt titan that automatically adapts itself to the dimensions and acoustics of its surroundings and uses its faceted, angular form to disperse sound with power and precision. Patinated Venezia leather adds another dimension of handcraft to this bespoke piece of audio equipment. ‘Together with Berluti, we’ve brought the best of artisanship to the fore with our expertise in sound and design, and Berluti’s knowledge in leather craftsmanship,’ says Christoffer Poulsen, B&O’s SVP of Product, ‘the result is a truly remarkable collection.’
Beoplay H95 Berluti Edition, £1,100
Beosound A1 2nd Gen Berluti Edition, £320
Berluti Sound Pouch, £450
Beosound Balance Berluti Edition, £3,200
Beovision Harmony Berluti Edition, £32,800
Beolab 90 Berluti Edition, £97,000
Jonathan Bell has written for Wallpaper* magazine since 1999, covering everything from architecture and transport design to books, tech and graphic design. He is now the magazine’s Transport and Technology Editor. Jonathan has written and edited 15 books, including Concept Car Design, 21st Century House, and The New Modern House. He is also the host of Wallpaper’s first podcast.
Modernist architecture: inspiration from across the globe
Modernist architecture has had a tremendous influence on today’s built environment, making these midcentury marvels some of the most closely studied 20th-century buildings; check back soon for new additions to our list
By Ellie Stathaki • Published
National Portrait Gallery unveils new brand identity and programme ahead of 2023 reopening
London’s National Portrait Gallery has revealed its new branding and full 2023-2024 programming information ahead of its much-anticipated June 2023 reopening
By Harriet Lloyd-Smith • Published
Delve into the Mexican jungle at Four Seasons Naviva
Four Seasons Naviva, Mexico, introduces 15 luxury tents, nestled in the jungle and centred around nature
By Martha Elliott • Published