Hermès bets on materials and savoir-faire at the Salone del Mobile

Translated by

Diana Leon Band

Posted on

Sep 6 2021

Hermès is one of the few luxury houses that has invested heavily in this year’s Salone del Mobile, which is held in Milan until September 10, albeit in a reduced format. The saddler, faithful to this popular event since 2011, has invested in La Pelota, as in the last edition of 2019, a historic venue where, until 1997, Basque pelota was played.

Hermès collaborates for the first time with Studio Mumbai – ph Dominique Muret

To enter this 2000 square meter space, located in the center of the city, you must show your credentials: a temperature control, an invitation and a sanitary pass are required. This Monday, Via Palermo, which is usually one of the hot spots in Brera’s design district, is pretty quiet. There are also no crowds at La Pelota, where entrances are staggered. Never seen before during the “Salone del Mobile”!

Throughout the month of August, the decorators of the Milanese opera La Scala worked intensively under the auspices of Charlotte Macaux Perelman, artistic co-director of Hermès Maison together with Alexis Fabry, to completely hand-decorate the five lime-plastered wooden houses that house the brand’s new collection of objects.

These five giant blocks, placed on a stretch of sand in Siena and decorated with multicolored patterns and geometric motifs, each house some exceptional objects in a sober and elegant decoration, which plays with the contrasts of white, light and dark.

Hermès installation is completely hand painted – ph Dominique Muret

This year, there are not a multitude of pieces. Instead, it is the know-how and materials that stand out in a bare space. Starting with the traditional papier-mâché technique, used for the first time by Hermès, going through the creation in a specialized workshop in Lecce, in Apulia, of an armchair designed in collaboration with the Indian designer Bijoy Jain, from the Mumbai studio. It is presented next to two coffee tables that look like grinding stones, carved and chiseled from black stone blocks.

Another ancient skill rediscovered by the brand is enameled copper. In a laboratory near Venice, it was used to create a series of centerpieces with different patterns and colors. Hanging on the walls, they are displayed with the brand’s famous Scottish paintings, this time in white, and for some models only with a gold thread applied to an original felt composition.

Hermès, the new collection of objects for the home – ph Dominique Muret

The other spaces host the playful Hippomobile tea and coffee set, decorated by the Italian artist Gianpaolo Pagni, who was inspired by the jockeys’ helmets and the world of cartoons, the colorful wicker and leather baskets, the rugs Cordelie fully embroidered by hand in India and the minimalist furniture line “Balance”.

Produced in Denmark, this light oak collection consists of a table, an armchair and a chair with a leather seat cushion, designed in collaboration with Jasper Morrison. The chair, in particular, takes up and reworks the model designed by the British designer in 1997 for the refectory of the Sainte-Marie de La Tourette convent, near Lyon, built in 1960 by Le Corbusier.

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