A jasmine in bloom and a small courtyard in a pleasant Venetian setting led us to discover the latest creation by the KANZ Architetti studio. We are inside their showroom in Calle Lunga San Barnaba, Dorsoduro: an interesting collaboration between content and container, in which the culture of Tea, narrated by tea Sommelier Gabriella Scarpa of Ar-Tea Academy, is welcomed by the form and substance of "Lido", the new glass tumbler created by the Venetian design studio, premiered on Thursday 16 June during the first 'Insoliti Aperitivi' event.
The glass features an inverted dome on the bottom that tends to recall the roof of St. Mark's Basilica. It's no coincidence that the glass has been cut transversally at the bottom, so as to create a certain "oriental-style" movement. Byzantine architecture is in fact the source of inspiration for this latest marvellous artefact.
The connection with the city of Venice has always underpinned the work of Antonella Maione and Mauro Cazzaro, who set up their design studio in 2014. Thanks to their different and complementary backgrounds, the KANZ studio deals with issues related to both residential building design and commercial interior design, and goes into detail in the design of objects of use.
From the very beginning, their productions have been characterised as the result of close collaboration with local artisan companies, recovering traditional workmanship but reinterpreting it in unique and original products.
This is how objects such as the TAKE pitcher came about, the first born in the family thanks to the contact and collaboration with the craftsman: seeing a series of plastic tubes being welded to take up less space in the workshop, they found the detail of the welding interesting, a sort of bulge that they decided to recreate as a motif in their piece that recalls a bamboo cane (from the Japanese Takè).
But not only aesthetic value, KANZ's creations aim above all at functionality: in this case, the rings that mark the body of the pitcher are also tools for measuring the liquid contained and, at the same time, help to hold it firmly.
Another zero-kilometre collaboration is the one created with Uni.S.Ve, a laboratory specialising in the restoration of interior and exterior surfaces of historic Venetian buildings, a few steps away from the KANZ shop. Together they have created one of the latest series of objects called 'Idols', a collection consisting of masks/sculptures, to be hung on the wall, made by hand with "stuccoforte", a traditional process used for the creation and restoration of Venetian stucco, here revived in a contemporary key. Since they are handmade, each edition is numbered and dated and some of them can be admired on a wall in the showroom in Dorsoduro.
The mission to support and protect the creativity of designers and the expertise of local craftsmen is also pursued with the VE.NICE STUFF, an annual initiative born in 2014 with the aim of giving visibility to some of the most interesting independent productions made by authors bound by the desire to search for an authentic and even experimental design, in a logic free from the seriality of industrial production. The aim is to highlight the creative potential of a city now suffocated by the quantity of activities linked to the mere tourist offer; alternatives to products without quality and tradition of which the shop windows of the lagoon are full.
In the last two years, the project has suffered a setback due to the pandemic and its restrictions, but Antonella and Mauro are determined to resume with its 7th edition, bringing to light traditional workmanship and the importance of Venetian craftsmanship.
The showroom itself, opened in Calle Avogaria in 2017 and then moved to Calle Lunga San Barnaba during February 2021, was born with the idea of facilitating a relationship with the local community and exchanging with them impressions on the objects produced.
The space, in fact, offers direct contact with the public, which makes it possible to immediately understand the degree of appreciation of the latest collections, and very often it is the community itself that offers hints and ideas for new projects.
You are all invited to take part in the next appointment of 'Insoliti Aperitivi', which will be held in October and will feature a solo exhibition by Japanese ceramist Tomoyo Yoshida. The content-container combination will be reinterpreted again in an even different way, full of surprises.