2023 New Collection. Modern transposition of the Roman Domus

2023 New Collection. Modern transposition of the Roman Domus


The 2023 Molteni&C Collection project, under the creative direction of Vincent Van Duysen, narrates the connection between indoor and outdoor, between intimacy and sharing, and between private and public space. The project is based on the domestic configurations of the ancient Roman Domus: the central element of the domus is the uncovered courtyard, from which the house receives light and water, collected in a pool. The other private and public rooms are arranged around the courtyard. The inner portico, or peristyle, adorned with columns, bounds the garden, and is intended for one’s otium in nature. The Belgian creative director also drew inspiration from the 1933 house designed and built by Pier Giulio Magistretti in Milan, which similarly integrates ancient and avantgarde elements.

Thus, the decor of the 2023 Collection strikes a balance between the comfort of privacy and the sophisticated expressions of contemporary living, revolving around the uncovered courtyard where the art of living takes shape. A home immersed in light and lush nature, where the indoors spills into the outdoors.

Within the collection, creative director Vincent Van Duysen dialogues with key international players of architecture and design: from the architecture studio Herzog & de Meuron to the Japanese designer Naoto Fukasawa. Enriching the proposal is the new Outdoor Collection, which is characterized by refined visual rigor and functional design, where elegant natural materials meet exceptional craftsmanship and technological research. The Fabric Collection, Varva, conceived by Marta Ferri, finds its signature in colour, a precious but fundamental detail that awaits to be discovered.

“The home is once again the beating heart: conceived in a new guise - domestic, welcoming, and reassuring - it becomes a place in which to participate and share, on the border between public and private. A home of noble simplicity and quiet grandeur”

says Vincent Van Duysen, quoting the archaeologist JJ Winckelmann.

Classical references to the Roman Domus are also found in the artistic collaboration with Roberto Ruspoli, who interpreted the Collection’s archetypes with his paintings. The work, ‘Virgil’s Dream’, created exclusively for Molteni&C, becomes the backdrop for the 2023 Collection’s new products.

It represents the imaginary room of the young poet Virgil, where his first poetic visions are formed. A setting in which nature reemerges from the falling plaster and cracked walls, penetrating with its elements and literally crossing the peristyle, while a playful Zephyr delights in blending it all together.

“Contours, lines, and anthropomorphic figures stand out in a monochromatic space, contaminated by ancient forms revisited with a modern twist,” Van Duysen says of Ruspoli’s work. “The classical gives way to the contemporary, in a stylistic ecstasy that breaks the patterns of space and time, to find itself in the here and now.”

Embellished with refined materials, innovative construction techniques, and the unparalleled craftsmanship of Molteni&C, the 2023 Collection features a wide range of furnishings, such as Porta Volta, the chair signed by Herzog & de Meuron - created for the National Library of Israel in Jerusalem - transposed for the home environment, or Naoto Fukasawa’s Cinnamon armchair, with its playful, anthropomorphic forms, which fit into a dimension dotted with Molteni&C elements of classic-contemporary style.

When combined, the palette of materials - natural wood, glass, leather, and metal - gives life to precious details, such as in the tone-on-tone of the Augusto sofa or in the elegant contrasting stitching on the leather headboard of the Ovidio bed.
Constant technological research is essential to a more intuitive design, in tune with contemporary needs. Like the Linear frame by Van Duysen, whose hidden hinges, integrated handle, and new silent and cushioned closures, create a refined experience from an aesthetic and functional point of view.

“In the new outdoor proposal, I pursued an idea of soft comfort, of organic playfulness in an architectural vision of furniture. I was inspired by modernism to evoke the idea of permeability and transparency between indoor and outdoor spaces and that intimate connection with light and nature,”

says Vincent Van Duysen.

The dialogue between materials is the underlining theme throughout the Outdoor Collection. The use of solid teak in the Landmark Collection - with the classic Luca Meda-inspired Palinfrasca sofa - matches the metal profiles of the Timeout Collection, and the cement finish of the Arc table by Foster+Partners creates a game of contrasts and references with the perforated iron top and lava stone base of Ron Gilad’s Panna Cotta table.

Both environments, interior and exterior, harmoniously coexist in the proposal. And to further dissolve the boundaries between the two, some pieces from the Outdoor Collection are reinvented for domestic use. Viewed as a whole, the 2023 Molteni&C Collection introduces a range of refined and sophisticated furnishings, with an international flavour and timeless stylistic coherence. Different personalities with a single distinctive trait: formal essentiality.

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