Gagosian presents the first solo exhibition in Greece of British designer Marc Newson’s work (until 7 January 2023). Imbued with joyful optimism, the all-blue collection of furniture on display pays homage to Greece, with a monochromatic palette that plays with materials and techniques.
‘Greece and Greek culture have always been close to my heart, and it’s an honour to share these works in Athens,’ says Newson.
Among the pieces on display are Newson’s ‘Cloisonné’ chair and lounger, replicated in blue and white with a molecular patterned motif. To create them, Newson used the ancient technique of cloisonné, which gives the name to the pieces, which involves applying fine enamel tiles to the surface – a method typically used for jewellery and small decorative objects.
To create the large-scale pieces, Newson collaborated with a specialist craftsperson in Beijing, who first created the copper wire surface, inlaid enamel into the design, and finally fired each piece up to 12 times in custom-made kilns.
Also on display are pieces such as the ‘Blue Glass Coffee Table’ and accompanying chair, combining solid forms of coloured and clear cast glass to create the furniture pieces, and the ‘Murrina Table’, first presented in different colourways with Gagosian in 2019 and here replicated in white and blue.
To create these pieces, Newson once again took a technique generally used on a small scale (the murrine originating in 16th-century Venice) and blew it up to create striking furniture pieces.
Working in marble, Newson chose Azul Macaubas stone for a new rendition of his ‘Extruded Console’ to match the exhibition theme. Carved from a single piece of marble as a silhouette of a furniture piece, the design’s dynamic approach blurs the boundaries between two-dimensional forms and three-dimensional functionality.
Moving beyond furniture design, the exhibition also includes Newson’s surfboard designs, originally created as prototypes for surfer Garrett McNamara, and his ‘Blue Hourglass’, made in Basel and handblown from a single piece of borosilicate glass, then filled with blue steel nanoballs, engineered by Swiss watch manufacturer De Bethune.
Marc Newson is on display at Gagosian Athens until 7 January 2023
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Rosa Bertoli was born in Udine, Italy, and now lives in London. Since 2014, she has been the Design Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees design content for the print and online editions, as well as special editorial projects. Through her role at Wallpaper*, she has written extensively about all areas of design. Rosa has been speaker and moderator for various design talks and conferences including London Craft Week, Maison & Objet, The Italian Cultural Institute (London), Clippings, Zaha Hadid Design, Kartell and Frieze Art Fair. Rosa has been on judging panels for the Chart Architecture Award, the Dutch Design Awards and the DesignGuild Marks. She has written for numerous English and Italian language publications, and worked as a content and communication consultant for fashion and design brands.
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