Draga&AurelDesigner - Milan
Founded in 2007 in the town of Como, Italy, Draga & Aurel is a multi-disciplinary design studio that works along the spectrum of furniture, textile and interior design. Draga Obradovic began her career in the fashion industry, first working in London and Milan as a textile designer before eventually settling in Como. Aurel K. Basedow graduated from Milan’s Accademia di Belle Arti with a degree in Fine Arts, having previously trained as a carpenter and woodworker.
Thanks to their sympathetic methods, combined with an artist’s approach to material and composition Draga & Aurel are widely recognized for their clever reinvention of bespoke vintage design pieces. Their showing at 2009’s Salone del Mobile introduced the duo to the world stage; it followed the partnerships with Italian leather manufacturer Baxter, wallpaper brand Wall&Deco and major American fashion retailer Anthropologie that have pushed the pair’s domain beyond the reinvention of singular vintage pieces. While interior projects, like Sicily’s Dimora delle Balze and Cannavacciuolo’s Café & Bistrot in Novara, have expanded their sought after aesthetic into the realm of hospitality and lifestyle.
Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze
Como-based designers Draga & Aurel debuted their latest collection of art, furniture and lightings, ‘Transparency Matters’, in the Brera Design District, Milan.
Milan, April 2019 – For the collection, Draga & Aurel took inspiration from Minimalism’s simplified volumes, the retro-futuristic experimentation of Space Age design and the eye-bending patterns of Optical Art. Together, they have brilliantly synthesized these varied influences to build an all-new collection, entirely fabricated by hand in their Como atelier. Working with coloured resin, bronze, brass, cast glass and vintage furniture in an inspired mineral palette, the duo has designed all-new seating, tables, lighting, bookshelves, desks and room dividers that span both indoor and outdoor.
Draga Obradovic notes: “The title of the exhibition has a double meaning. Transparency matters: for us, it is the most important attitude. It refers to the transparent materials used in the collection — cast resin, glass and plexy — as well as our evolutions as designers. From Transparency, we think of transformation, transition, transgression, transnational: all words that describe us and our more than ten years of working together.”
A deft compositional eye is a hallmark of Draga & Aurel’s work. Within the 200sqm Brera gallery, the pair will interpret the power of transparency to illuminate, delight, transform and distort. The space will be divided into two zones: a brightly-lit central volume with a sequence of mise en scènes featuring the pair’s furniture, which branches off into a series of dimly-lit private rooms designed to highlight their atmospheric coloured lighting in resin and glass.
“This collection is a symbol of our evolution as designers and artists. We approached the project holistically, mastering new processes, working with new materials and creating each piece by hand in our atelier. Designing this solo collection was an opportunity for us to express our joy and think outside the box following a decade of partnerships and collaborations,” explains Draga Obradovic of the new exhibition.
This is Draga & Aurel’s second Milan Design Week exhibition; the first, 2008’s ‘Contain Yourself’, bookends eleven prolific years for the Como-based duo.