Humberto Campana welcomes us to his new São Paulo studio

by Editors Staff

Approaching Rua Doutor Miranda de Azevedo, within the bucolic São Paulo neighbourhood of Vila Anglo Brasileira, it’s already doable to understand from afar that there’s something recent and weird. Right here is the brand new studio of Humberto Campana, who, alongside his youthful brother Fernando, noticed poetry in material dolls and different humble supplies from Brazil’s inside, elevating them into collectible design. Working collectively for 4 a long time, the Campanas turned the main lights of Brazil’s design scene and gained widespread worldwide recognition. Thus, Humberto’s solo profession, following the demise of his brother final November, has been the topic of nice hypothesis and anticipation.

Regardless of their eight-year age distinction, Humberto and Fernando seemed like twins, and will nicely have been a single individual. The 2 had been typically impressed by the identical object, even when they encountered it at completely different occasions, they usually shared the identical ideas and sometimes arrived on the studio carrying similar garments. They left their outdated studio when the proprietor determined to promote, and moved to the brand new studio final November, shortly earlier than Fernando handed away.

Humberto Campana: a brand new studio in São Paulo and the start of a solo profession

On the studio’s higher ground – which encompasses a ‘Vermelha’ chair for Edra, ‘Zoide’ couch for Paola Lenti, ‘Merengue’ pouf for Louis Vuitton, and ‘Abbraccio’ armchair for Giustini Stagetti – a glass ground has been put in to permit extra mild into the ground beneath

(Picture credit score: Vava Ribeiro )

Whereas Humberto got here to phrases together with his loss, he started to ponder how the brand new house might supply a clean canvas for his solo profession. Its inside is outlined by excessive ceilings and huge volumes. On the bottom ground is the workshop, with stitching machines and chopping tables amid the vegetation and prototypes. Upstairs, the workplace encompasses a winter backyard that floods all the ground with pure mild. Along with more room for manufacturing, Humberto now has a beneficiant space wherein to exhibit items and prototypes. A library homes books on the likes of Irving Penn, Max Ernst, Kaws, Takashi Murakami, Sebastião Salgado, Jaume Plensa, Wolfgang Tillmans, Pierre Keller and James Turrell, whereas a big convention desk, crafted from a single tree trunk, is surrounded by eight completely different seats designed by the brothers.

Humberto Campana studio in Sao Paulo

Within the library, which is roofed in golden Ferrero Rocher wrappers, are a pair of ‘Favela’ chairs for Edra and ‘Bomboca’ couch for Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades

(Picture credit score: Vava Ribeiro )

The façade is already displaying indicators of change: a perforated metallic sheet permits pure mild to enter the principle room of the warehouse, which was as soon as a automotive workshop. Humberto opened a skylight, made a glass ground to let extra mild into the bottom ground, and created out of doors areas for his staff. However he wouldn’t be a Campana if he stopped there: he coated the library and reception space with golden metallic Ferrero Rocher chocolate wrappers to light up the surroundings even additional, whereas referencing the duo’s 2012 ‘Barocco Rococó’ assortment, the place playfulness met extra.

The earlier studio, a rented house that the brothers had occupied since 1992, had been very darkish. When he began on the lookout for a brand new house, Humberto had just one certainty in thoughts – he needed one thing brighter and lighter. ‘I’m going to be 70 years outdated. As we become older, we would like extra lightness in life,’ he says. And whereas this transfer is linked to adjustments in his private {and professional} life, it is usually a response to the political tumult Brazil has skilled. ‘The 4 years of Bolsonaro’s authorities had been very laborious,’ he says. ‘I felt harm in my soul. So I went to plant bushes, to purge all of the despair that I felt. And this house turned my temple, a spot of therapeutic.’

Humberto Campana studio in Sao Paulo

‘Sushi’ couch, ‘Vermelha’ chair for Edra, ‘Circus’ rug for Nodus, ‘Panda’ stool, and ‘Jenette’ eating chair for Edra

(Picture credit score: Vava Ribeiro )

In the back of the studio is a big bell. Campana means ‘bell’ in Italian, however the thought was additionally to mark this as a sacred house. ‘I feel there’s a really religious ambiance right here,’ he says. ‘And I see my career as one thing sacred, as a result of, in a means, I enter individuals’s properties. Their temples. I’m very shy, and that is how I talk and inform so many stunning tales about Brazil.’

The brothers had been at all times impressed by Brazilian in style tradition, growing their very own aesthetic by an ‘anthropophagic’ course of – the time period, coined by poet Oswald de Andrade in 1928, refers back to the modernist idea of ‘ingesting’ European references, alongside the symbols of on a regular basis Brazil, in an effort to ‘vomit’ one thing of its place that’s internationally recognisable. In recent times, nevertheless, pure supplies gained extra prominence within the brothers’ follow, in a means connecting their creations with Arte Povera, an artwork motion that, along with giving which means to what was thought-about rubbish, valued the ephemeral, and consequently appreciated the cycles of life.

Humberto Campana studio in Sao Paulo

(Picture credit score: Vava Ribeiro )

The duo’s first work in clay was a response to the 2015 Mariana dam catastrophe, within the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais, which induced a deluge of poisonous mud, devastating the group. Fernando and Humberto designed terracotta cobogós (perforated bricks typically utilized in Brazilian structure) within the form of a hand, as a warning and a name for solidarity. Within the studio, these reappear within the type of a desk, a ground and a backyard sink. Additionally in 2015, the brothers created an set up wherein they shaped a panorama from a pores and skin composed of compacted clay pebbles. A bit from this venture options within the studio’s entrance gallery, alongside the final assortment by the duo: Polifonia Campana, launched in 2022 at Luciana Brito Galeria, is made up of round 40 tables and lamps that once more give prominence to clay. Among the many inspirations for the gathering is the joão-de-barro, a South American chook identified for making clay nests resembling ovens.

Humberto Campana studio in Sao Paulo

A chandelier, from the Fragments assortment for Venini, made out of multicoloured scraps of Murano glass  

(Picture credit score: Vava Ribeiro )

The gathering was produced in a small workshop known as Cerâmica Pajé, in Santa Gertrudes, about 56km from Brotas, the place the brothers had been born. ‘I had this concept of going again to our origins. And shortly after, Fernando left. We had gone there collectively and plainly we had been already saying goodbye; the method of this assortment had a particular vitality,’ says Humberto.

Supply: Wallpaper

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