Friday, September 21st 2018
Gervasoni’s Paola Navone in Attitude Magazine
(Extract from Attitude Magazine)
This July we had the opportunity to have a chat with Paola Navone at the magnificent Hotel Sublime, in Comporta. The designer’s visit to Portugal was the result of an invitation from the Italian brand Gervasoni, whose pieces and creations have been visible both in and outdoors at the hotel for more than 20 years. Paola’s visit took place within the context of the inauguration of the Alaire store (www.alaire. pt), also in Comporta, being Gervasoni’s main commercial partner. This brand began its implementation in Portugal just three years ago and considers our country to have great potential, with annual growth of around 20%, according to Giacomo Bianchi, Export Manager at Gervasoni.
The designer’s relationship with the Gervasoni brothers (belonging to the third generation of this family company) is over 20 years old, inevitably leading to a very special partnership. Being responsible for the entire process of product development for the brand – and acknowledging the various differences between the product design process which she carries out for other brands – at Gervasoni, Paola enjoys the creative freedom that is so closely associated with her personal path. She frequently combines artisanal work with industrial production, in order to include one or two imperfections that might arise during production, and she also combines different materials with a touch of irony, during processes that she finds both stimulating and challenging. This talent, combined with a constant bubbling of ideas, leads to pieces that are not merely pure design or a stereotyped language; they are creations that might initially inspire some misunderstanding from the public, but which latterly achieve a degree of recognition. “I see myself more like a gypsy creator”, she states good-humouredly.
While in the area of product design she stands out from the majority of Italian designers, we can appreciate her true flair for creativity and originality in the creation of public spaces, such as in hotels, restaurants or stores. Each project is approached like a film – a comedy, a thriller or detective movie – and then the challenge is to create the setting for each space, to evoke a story, whose narrative is always different. “The projects I most enjoy are those that still haven’t come to an end and, when they do, I switch off and move on to the next one, just like films”, she says enthusiastically.
Regarding the creation of private interiors, she confesses that she happily does this but only for friends or people she knows very well. Paola also shared some of her stories about when she worked In Asia and which inspired her for years and where she is still involved in some projects. An example of this is the COMO Dempsey space in Singapore, a project associated with the COMO Hotels and Resorts group, which promotes new approaches and concepts in the areas of fashion, gastronomy, and design.
About to leave for Florence, where she is working on a hotel, there was still enough time to offer her the edition of Attitude in which we had published a report on the curatorship she had done for the design exhibition held in Cairo in 2010. And also to mention how, ever since then, we had followed her progress more closely, be it in the creation of public spaces, product design or the curatorship of exhibitions. She extended an invitation to visit her studio in Milan, probably complemented by a culinary tasting under her supervision. We’ll be visiting her soon, no doubt.
InOut 629 by Gervasoni
This new daybed InOut 629, in hand-woven kudu rattan, looking almost like an extra large nest, is the latest outdoor collection designed by Paola Navone for Gervasoni
Friday, September 21st 2018
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