A series of rooms illustrates the various different concepts of contemporary design, through hugely impactful displays and furnishing pieces reprised with novel combinations of materials, treatments and colours.
“Our reflections inspired us to create contemporary scenarios, in an imaginary world part real, part virtual, subject to sudden change, culminating in this vision of the multiple facets of daily life. The cornerstones are design and light, two fundamental, complementary and necessary aspects to defining contemporary living and its essential spaces”, say Simone Ciarmoli and Miguel Queda.
The entrance to the exhibition is along a narrow corridor with blue walls, an intimate and cosy passage. Three animal-shaped mirrors – a monkey, an owl and a fox – hang above small shelves, evoking play, the connection with nature and the return to the essential.
The focal point of the entrance to DeLightFuL, at the end of this narrow corridor, is a white bronze chair, archetypal and spare, monumental in its simplicity, jointly designed for the occasion by the great Portuguese architect Álvaro Siza and Ciarmoli Queda Studio.
The exhibition then unfolds in free, unpredefined spaces, with unexpected scenarios generated by reinventing the rules of home living, which become fluid and changeable: a house with no walls in which architecture and light, symbiotic and complementary, play an important role in highlighting individual furnishing pieces, unusual combinations and mises en scène that hover between the real and the virtual.
This then leads us into the first room, Hall of Arts, which contains a series of displays that set up a dialogue between interior and exterior, the public and the private space. The idea of spaces that lead into each other, changing in relation to each other, is underscored by ten transparent, coloured doors, which reveal a series of objects, chairs and lamps of all different colours, modifying their appearance.
The second room contains reflections on different times of day, from morning to evening, and on the different ages of man – from childhood through adolescence to adulthood – from waking up in the morning until bedtime, in the evening, carrying the baggage of experiences from the past day.
There is special focus on gathering around a table, an activity common to all cultures and all epochs, which in itself carries many different meanings: three tables and three installations describe different worlds – Las Vegas, Shanghai and the Aegean – emphasising differences, styles and features, to suggest an ideal common denominator that overcomes every sort and kind of boundary.
The constant presence of art and photography throw open another window onto the contemporary, with shots by Yoshie Nishikawa and Paolo Alberto Gatti, rounding off the story of DeLightFuL.
The third large room is devoted to cinema. Lots of sofas, all of them white, yet all different in shape and provenance, are scattered around a fluid area that plays on transparency and nuance. Silvery, reflective curtains define the spaces, returning graphic patterns designed by the neon lights.