Patricia Urquiola: Design Tour de Force

Patricia Urquiola

Patricia Urquiola

Patricia Urquiola continues to charge through the world of design, affectionately earning the nickname “Hurricane Urquiola”.

The Spanish-born designer, who now lives in Milan, has been one of the key figures in contemporary furniture design in the past decade. One of the few top female designers, Urquiola has won several awards and is represented by many well-known houses, including Moroso, B&B Italia, Kartell, among others. Paola Antonelli, a Milan native who’s now chief curator at New York’s Museum of Modern Art said in an interview with Fast Company, “For them, Urquiola is a winning horse. She gets business because she makes business.”

It’s not Urquiola’s impressive market success that garnered her the “hurricane” label, but rather her endearing mannerisms – a brew of simultaneously speaking Spanish, English and Italian, expressive gesturing, and the spirited tangents that are part of her work process. She said, “The mood of the piece is what people catch – I just flow with the river and try to do things that are sincere, that anyone can understand”.

Urquiola’s designs marry a protective, almost maternal undertone with a clean, modern aesthetic. Without being fussy or formulaic, her creations weave memories and daily life together with technology.   Many of her designs infer the idea of a cradle, with a high back or a secluded, cocoon shape, such as Clarissa Hood Armchair, Husk Chair and Crinoline.

Others draw on floral imagery from nature and knitted materials, such as Foliage Sofa, Crochet Rug, Biknit Lounge and Antibodi Chaise Lounge. Smock Chair took inspiration from Urquiola’s infant daughter’s dress.  Watching her grandmother make lace from bobbins informed the shape of Nub. Volant Chair takes the crown with its ruffled edge and uber-refined pleats.

Although her designs have been coined as “feminine”, Urquiola highlighted in an interview with Elle Decor, “People often say that sensuality and sensitivity are feminine qualities, but they are not gender specific. They are individual qualities…Where women are different from men is that women are more flexible, adaptable, and able to multitask. We have to be to survive, and those two qualities—flexibility and adaptability—I like a lot in design”.

Whether regarded as feminine or otherwise, Patricia Urquiola’s are profoundly humanistic. She added, “It’s the equation between the habitat—the tools for living—and the person who is using them; how they’re related, which is the thing that interests me”.

Check out a few favorites:

Crinoline Chair for B&B Italia

Crinoline Chair for B&B Italia

Clarissa Hood Armchair for Moroso

Clarissa Hood Armchair for Moroso

Husk Armchair for B&B Italia

Husk Armchair for B&B Italia

Foliage Sofa for Kartell

Foliage Sofa for Kartell

Nub for Andreau World

Nub for Andreau World

Egg Swing, Kettal's Maia Collection

Egg Swing, Kettal’s Maia Collection

Re-Trouve Collection for Emu

Re-Trouve Collection for Emu

Biknit Chaise Lounge and Chair for Moroso

Biknit Chaise Lounge and Chair for Moroso

Biknit Lounge Detail

Biknit Lounge Detail

Antibodi Chaise Lounge for Moroso

Antibodi Chaise Lounge for Moroso

Crochet Rug for Paola Lenti

Crochet Rug for Paola Lenti

Mangas rug for Gianda Blasco

Mangas rug for Gianda Blasco

Volant Chair for Moroso

Volant Chair for Moroso

Detail of Volant Chair

Detail of Volant Chair

 

Product Links:

Moroso

B&B Italia

Paola Lenti

Emu

Kettal

Andreau World

Kartell

 

 

Comments

  1. I just have to say that I find these utterly delightful and they look as though they would be extremely comfortable to sit/sleep in! Great job.

  2. love, love these designs, the furniture looks so comfortable, and unique,. In a mass production world, it is so refreshing to see something different.

Speak Your Mind

*