Recently, the New York City design studio Apparatus premiered a new collection that paid homage to musical motifs. The collection was influenced by the music and composition of Theme and Variation. About the unveileding, the studio declared, “Musical references inform the collection, with motifs evoking synesthetic interpretations of notes on a score, and a pair of cabinets conceived in the compositional tradition of Theme and Variation.”
The firm revealed Interlude at both Salone del Mobile and New York Design Week in 2019; it was launched under a new line, Apparatus Editions. The limited edition collection presents fine handcraft to the nth degree that far surpasses the studio’s current highly demanding production pieces.
Interlude was inspired by the fantasy of a shuttered Italian modernist theater. The striking collection features a variety of handcrafted materials and artisanal techniques that Gabriel Hendifar, Apparatus’ creative director, has collected over the past five years.
Some of the most special pieces include leather that has been hand-folded tightly thousands of times, over and over again, in order to create a new texture applied to cabinetry, lampshades made from brass mesh that feature individual exquisitely embroidered shapes all hand-crafted, and panels of eel skin that has been elegantly inlaid onto table surfaces.
The light fixtures are truly exceptional… decorative embroidery, beading, and thread-work is carefully integrated into the exterior of a brass mesh shade. The shade forms the exact shade used on several of the light fixtures from the Interlude Collection. To further accessorize the shade, musical shapes and symbols are sewn onto the pieces; these are a collective range of colors, patterns, and textures.
Apparatus, when speaking of the collection, said “The dimensional beading and thread-work evoke synesthetic interpretations of a musical score, organic forms recorded on a strict grid.”
The marble tables are inspired by symbols found in music scores. As such, pieces of marble shaped like the embroidery motifs form the surfaces of the collection’s tables. Two small sections break away from the large central table to create the series and they are conceived as one piece.
Unique between the screens and the marble tables is that they are both bonded together by superior handiwork. Hendifar likens the pieces to Old World craft and says that all the materials “reflect the hand of the maker.” The four-panel screen required 800 hours of embroidery work by artisans in India. Along those lines, the same thread-work is found on the lighting fixtures, and it also inspired the organic shape of the cocktail table.
A video on the making of the Interlude Collection.
We could continue to describe the collection; however, Hendifar says it best: “Although our entire collection is the result of incredible focus and craft, there are times when we have to pull back on creative impulses because we are somewhat confined by the limitations of production. Creating edition-ed work is a chance for the studio to really indulge in handcraft and materials without confines. With ‘Interlude’, we were able to conceive a collection that is a full, rich expression of a creative impulse, while exploring processes that test the limit.”