Intercultural experimentation in arts and crafts opens in Manhattan’s Chelsea with a new gallery space that fuses the traditional techniques of Italian artisans with the fresh ideas of contemporary artists, designers and curators. .
Artemest Galleria, which opened at 518 West 19th Street earlier this month, is the first physical gallery and showroom for high-end interiors and lifestyle website Artemest.
Launched in 2015, the site is home to over 1,400 Italian artisans and designers looking for fine furniture and handcrafted items, from small things like marble cake stands to leather sofas and Murano. It connects an international audience of architects, private clients. glass chandelier.
A new 5,000-square-foot function space serves as an art gallery, with exhibits changing every three months. Event spaces and offices where architects, interior designers, and other clients can plan projects and source home decor, furniture, and lighting.
Artemest Galleria is currently hosting a show called ‘Blow’. This is intended to highlight the skill and craftsmanship of Murano’s glassblowers through the eyes of Caribbean-born artist Bradley, his Theodore.
The space is filled with Theodore’s large and small works, giving it a pop-art vibe that bears no resemblance to the idea of a traditional Murano glass chandelier. There are glass sculptures, mirrors decorated with skulls hanging against a backdrop covered with hand-painted wallpaper.
Theodore pieces were created by Italian glassblower Ongaro e Fuga. Fratelli Tosi; Luci Italia; Specchi Veneziani; Polymorph; Venice Factory, Covier his Puccioni.
First unveiled in June at Milan’s Salone del Mobile, ‘Blow’ shows how Artemest differs from other furniture and interior showrooms.
The Artemest Galleria and the exhibitions it will host is a vision for the co-founders to show the world that traditional crafts are not dead, withered or dusty, and that millions of Italian artisans It’s a way to communicate that we continue to make everyday items using century-old techniques.
Artemest co-founder and creative director Ippolita Rostagno said:
“We try to take people’s notions of craft out of their dusty closets and shine a new light on them, showing what it really means to be contemporary. The world is not only tied to the maker culture, it can also be reinvigorated by the influence of artists, designers and people who have traditionally had no access to this incredible wealth of craftsmanship and design. There is potential,” she adds.
Every three months Artemest Galleria will nominate a different artist, curator or maker to work with different artisans to create new works for a series of exhibitions.
New York-based Rostagno is a fine jewelry designer who grew up outside Florence, studied sculpture in the city of Italy, and is passionate about the country’s traditional crafts.
Rostagno originally planned to call the website Italy.com, but wanted to promote the country’s artisans struggling to survive in a rapidly changing digital world.
“This whole adventure started out as a passion project for me. Seeing these artisans closing their shops, I was very upset by this fact because I knew that the customers would be there. because I knew
She teamed up with co-founder Marco Credendino, who worked on the corporate and strategic side of Yoox Net-a-porter Group. Their aim was to bring together Italian craft-based businesses on a single, curated platform and showcase them to the world.
Artemest aims to do for Italian artisans what Farfetch did for smaller multi-brand retailers, taking charge of international marketing and providing sales platform, digital and client services doing.
Italy is estimated to have more than 1.3 million small arts and crafts companies employing more than 3 million people, many of which are family businesses. According to Rostagno and Credendino, many of these businesses were left behind by the Internet boom.
Initially, when Credendino was setting up the technology and logistics side of the business, Rostagno “was taking trains all over Italy looking for small craftsmen in every nook and corner. I told them, ‘Launch a website. and sell your beautiful things.” Some of them looked at me like I had two heads,” she says.
Artemest sells across categories such as home and living, interiors, art and furniture. Selected sites have their own magazine, featuring articles and profiles of the craftsman, features of his interior design, and extensive editorial photography of his style.
The opening of Artemest Galleria was the next step in the journey, a way to cater to the existing community and promote Italian artisans to a new audience.
According to Credendino, the opening of the Artemest Galleria was essential to the development of the brand. Because it allows businesses to “tell many different stories, engage and re-engage with clients,” and build like-minded communities that are passionate about and supportive of high-end craftsmanship. .
“E-commerce will always be at our core, but in markets where we already have a strong customer base, we want to be part of the community. We want to build a physical space where you can do that,” he says.
Rostagno added that New York was a natural location to open the first Artemest Galleria. The architect and interior his designer is based here and the US is our first market, so it makes sense to have a physical space where you can really meet the community. ”
The new space is located on the first floor of a building designed by Annabel Selldorf of Selldorf Architects. It’s across from the David Zwirner Gallery.
Rostagno and Credendino say they preferred downtown arts districts to New York’s furniture districts because they wanted to focus on the intersection of arts and crafts instead of marketing them as separate furniture and home décor stores. .
The new space also includes a garden, where Artemest will host events and showcase outdoor furniture beginning next spring. There are gardens and galleries, as well as project rooms, sample rooms, and office space for meetings.
Going forward, there will be a workshop space for architects, interior designers and private clients to work on residential and commercial projects and preview finishes, fabrics and materials.
Credendino adds that New York is just the beginning. The business partner plans to open three more showrooms over the next three years. Probably on the West Coast of the United States and the Middle East.
Their ultimate goal is to expand beyond Italy, bringing together craftsmen and craftsmen from all over the world to help them market and sell their designs using Artemest’s technology, services and logistics. is.