“Inspired in Barcelona: Terra Rossa” presents in Milan a grand collective installation inspired by soil as the ultimate provider

Sixteen artists from various disciplines reinterpret the traditional Catalan clay pitcher,showcasing at Fuorisalone the vitality andsavoir-faireof Barcelona's creative scene

“Inspired in Barcelona: Terra Rossa” is a collective exhibition that brings together to Milan, from April 16th to 21st, sixteen contemporary artists and designers from Barcelona, united by the commission of intervening the Catalan clay càntir, a traditional pitcher used for cooling liquids, in an event that celebrates and blends matter with form, tradition with creativity, nature with mankind, all through the medium of design.

In the space Sirtori26, in the heart of the Porta Venezia Design District, the installation curated by Júlia Esqué with a concept by Apartamento Studios enhances the values of materiality, sustainability, and proximity, in line with the theme of Fuorisalone,

Materia Natura, and stands as a celebration of life, craftsmanship, and wine culture, namely of soil as the ultimate provider.

“Terra Rossa” represents a distinctive type of red soil composed of clay and limestone, commonly found across the Mediterranean region. It is often used for pottery and brickmaking, but also has surprisingly good drainage characteristics, which makes it an excellent type of soil for vine cultivation and wine production. This is why the history of wine and clay is deeply intertwined and is a testament to the enduring relationship between human culture and the natural world, where ancient practices continue to influence modern traditions.

In the words of the curator Júlia Esqué “Exploring the symbiotic relationship between earth and clay in relation to food we uncover a profound narrative of sustenance and nourishment. Earth provides raw ingredients and clay transforms them into vessels that elevate the experience. These objects become conduits that bridge our connection to the land and the artisans. They become vessels for cultural and artistic significance, reflecting the creativity and craftsmanship of societies throughout history.”

The centerpiece of the installation is a monumental pyramid composed of 80 artistic càntirs made site-specific for the event. These traditional Catalan clay pitchers used to cool liquids are the result of the creative reinterpretation by 16 different designers and artists from Catalonia.

The artistic “alterations” were carried out in collaboration with Eloi Bonadona, a ceramic artist representing the seventh generation of a family of potters. He works with local clays with natural textures and colors that reflect the essence and harmony of the territory, and he has recently been recognized by the Homo Faber guide.

Half of the artists, Jaume Ramirez, Lolo y Sosaku, OWL Furniture and Objects, Helena Fradera, Marc Morro, Klas Ernflo, Claudia Valsells, and Robbie Whitehead, intervened their jug in its raw condition, before firing, transforming the traditional pieces into unique contemporary objects, while still functional and respectful of the original proportions, as requested by the curatorial project. The other half of the artists, Mark Bohle, Gina Berenguer, Laura Brichs, Luna Paiva, Pepa Reverter, Albert Riera Galceran, Xavier Mañosa, and About Arianne, have taken a plastic approach, making changes to the pitchers following the firing. They engaged in an intervention on the surface of the jug, adjusting the skin with the use of colors, paints, ropes, or other materials, without altering its original structure.

Overall, the exhibition “Inspired in Barcelona: Terra Rossa” will offer visitors a rich and multisensory experience.

At the entrance, located within the courtyard of Sirtori26, the visitor is welcomed by a versatile central area, set up in collaboration with the Catalan design brands Crevin, Vergés, and LedsC4, and then accesses an anteroom, which works as a preparatory space, of primordial materiality. Characterized by surfaces smeared with ochre mud,

the vestibule of the exhibition features a large amphora, created by the ceramicist at the service of wine Carles Llarch. In the jar rests a selection of Xarel·lo grapes from old vineyards of the Penedés, the largest wine region in Catalonia. Llarch often extracts the clay from the same land where he cultivates his vines, an area dedicated to wine since Roman times, elaborating his ceramic amphorae according to a tradition that has more than six centuries of history.

Initially concealed from view, the main hall beyond the vestibule is a majestic space, an agora, where the visitor discovers the large pyramid measuring 4.5 meters high and wide on each side, the central element of the exhibition with works by sixteen participating designers and artists from various disciplines such as jewelry, fashion, photography, performance, and art.

At the base of the pyramid, guests will find some càntir filled with wine to sip the nectar of Bacchus in the traditional Catalan way, a galet, a toast to complete a unique, cultural yet convivial and festive experience, an ideal setting for the encounter between tradition and the power of transformation, celebrating Catalan savoir-faire at the Fuorisalone of the Milan Design Week.

The variety of disciplines showcased by the designers of the event stands as one of the most significant examples of the motto of the Porta Venezia Design District, “Everythink is design.”

“Inspired in Barcelona: Terra Rossa” is organized by BCD – Barcelona Centre de Disseny and is promoted by the Government of Catalonia through ACCIÓ – Catalonia Trade & Investment, together with the Barcelona City Council (through Instituto de Cultura de Barcelona – ICUB and Disseny Hub Barcelona – DHub). With the creative support of Max Milà for lighting, and the collaboration of the brands Crevin, Vergés, LedsC4, and San Miguel.

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