Bonjour, Maison & Objet! Welcome to America!
As the premier luxury home fair, M&O has held court in Paris twice each year (in January and September) for more than two decades. And with its irreproachable reputation, designers, architects, trendspotters, and stylemakers from around the globe have long made the pilgrimage to the City of Light for an insider look at the most cutting-edge interior design products and to meet both revered design visionaries and rising-star design talent.
In 2015, the fair is widening its reach and hosting tradeshows on two other continents—Maison & Objet Asia in Singapore, which took place on March 10 through 13, and Maison & Objet Americas in Miami Beach that kicks off today and runs through May 16. Miami. M&O organizers say the show in Florida offers a business platform in the heart of the Americas, which captures the attention of their 954 million inhabitants. They aim to offer an annual event for the North and South American trade that will bring together a selection of 300 brands representing the upscale spirit that has proven successful for the Paris show. Alongside the Americas tradeshow, M&O will host an Interior Design & Lifestyle Summit, bringing together leading industry experts in design and decoration, including architect David Rockwell and designer Dror Benshetrit, two strong personalities who are certain to thrill their audiences.
The Americas show also has an official ambassador in the inaugural Designer of the Year: South American designer Zanini de Zanine. Joining the ranks of such vaulted previous winners from the Paris show as Zaha Hadid, Patricia Urquiola, Philippe Starck, Paola Navone, and so many others, de Zanine embodies the balance of artistry and commercial design, local and international appeal, and the devotion to excellence that M&O has come to represent.
“As an international fair, we sought someone with global recognition and with a multinational body of work, which is clearly the case for Zanini de Zanine who has collaborated with several iconic European brands,” says Philippe Brocart, managing director of Safi, the company that owns and operates Maison & Objet. “His diversity of product, from big brands to his studio dedicated to creating gallery and auction-house pieces, was also a factor.”
De Zanine was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and has dedicated his life to being a furniture designer. In fact, he began working with wood before he could walk, thanks to his father, the celebrated Brazilian architect and designer, José Zanine Caldas. In 2002, de Zanine earned a degree in Industrial Design from Pontifíca Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro. In 2003, he opened his own atelier producing furniture and sculptures using reclaimed materials such as salvaged exotic hardwoods—some from his father’s architectural projects. “One aspect of my work is the subversive reuse of objects and materials” says Zanine. “Brazil’s large indigent population has learned to improvise and recycle in fantastic ways, and I try to portray their efforts with integrity.”
In 2005, de Zanine began to work with materials such as plastic, acrylic, and metals. “I experiment with new technologies, such as injection materials, all the while looking for rich textures and colors that excite me,” the artist explains. “I’m drawn to the counterpoint of craft and industrial, which balance and complement each other.” To represent this new line of design and crafts, he opened Studio Zanini in 2011. The artist has garnered prestigious awards and exhibited his work in Brazil and abroad, as well as has pieces included in the permanent collections at Museu do Design e da Moda Lisboa (Museum of Fashion and Design, Lisbon, Portugal) and Museo Historico do Rio de Janeiro (National History Museum of Rio de Janeiro).
Congratulations to Zanini de Zanine on being named the Maison & Objet Americas Designer of the Year! And cheers to M&O on setting up shop in Miami! We are thrilled you are here!
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