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TLmag 25: Alpine Creatives

Jun 10, 2016

Released today, TLmag 25 explores the correlation between Italy and Switzerland: an Alpine context setting the stage for creative heritage and innovation.

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2016 marks both TLmag’s silver jubilee and the 25th edition of the Biennale Interieur in Kortrijk, Belgium. At the helm of this year’s “Silver Lining Interiors” themed fair are curators OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen, Richard Venlet and Joris Kritis. TLmag saw this as the perfect opportunity to go on a journalistic road trip through the Alps, alternately speeding through and slowing down to admire the work scattered throughout the long lakes and majestic mountains.

This issue’s cover was designed by Alfredo Häberli, a man who knows how to appreciate beautiful cars, the good life and the kind of design that marries poetry and precision. Häberli crafted the cover’s alpine silver diamonds as stroboscope motif at his studio on Lake Zurich. “Thinking about the Alps, the rocks and snow, a crystal image comes to mind,” he describes. “It’s important to create a curiosity from far away and to in come closer over time; details become evident. On the cover, mountains and Milan’s Duomo scale down to the mechanism of a watch. In between an iconic car and chair reveal human proportions.”

Italy and Switzerland share a strong design culture ripe with innovative ideas. Switzerland’s picturesque cities, forever running like clockwork, stand in stark contrast to the romance, colours, imagination and chaos of Italy. One country’s characteristic. Alpine precision tends toward the ascetic. The other country’s glamorous sartorial tradition draws on a national history of cinematic and manufacturing expertise.

In an effort to bridge the cultural divide between Europe the romantic and Europe the Germanic, TLmag looked to nature as a source of inspiration common to both countries. In the eyes of designers Mathieu Lehanneur and Rolf Sachs, nature evokes man’s basic needs. This vision is very much in line with the work of Carlo Mollino, Gaetano Pesce, Alfredo Häberli, collective Nucleo, Tomáš Král, Adrien Rovero, Julie Richoz and Lowie Vermeersch.

While Italy has played a large role in modern and contemporary design, infusing them with emotions and stories with companies like Edra, Switzerland is responsible for forming the fundamentals of the Integral graphic design movement, as Ruedi Baur and Lars Müller so beautifully explain. It excels in the specialised fields of watchmaking, sanitary ware and office furniture, as illustrated by the brands Audemars Piguet, Laufen and USM and Vitra respectively.

From Basel to Geneva, Bern, Zurich, Switzerland gets credit for giving birth to world-renowned museums, art collections and events such as Art Basel and Design Miami/Basel. The country also shaped unique approaches to art curation, such as those described by Hans Ulrich Obrist, Simon Castets, Matylda Krzykowski and Rebekka Kiesewetter and Samuel Leuenberger.

When reflecting on the Alps, Gustav Mahler springs to mind. For the famous Austrian composer, lakes were at the origin of all creation and the Alpine summits were the true measure of potential. Likewise, the perspectives of contemporary architects like Peter ZumthorValerio Olgiati, Bernard Tschumi, OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen and Christian Wassmann help us to appreciate the precision and purity of their architecture, their ability to express the essential.    

Subscribe and/or order your copy here.    

Appetizers: Special Guests
Gaetano Pesce,
Alfredo Häberli,
Mathieu Lehanneur,
Rolf Sachs,
Hans Ulrich Obrist,
Simon Castets,
Lars Müller,
Ruedi Baur,
Lowie Vermeersch

Transalpine Architecture
Alpine Culture Alpine Landscapes,
Peter Zumthor,
Valerio Olgiati,
Bernard Tschumi,
Christian Wassermann,
OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen,


Excellence & Creation
Depot Basel,
Tomàš Král,
Adrien Rovero,
Julie Richoz

Okolo Selects: Anna Heck, Francesco Faccin, Marlo & Isaure, Zanellato/Bortotto, Dimitri Bähler, Zaven, Thévoz-Choquet, Ilaria Innocenti
School Selects: Charlotte Baverel, Rodrigo Caula, Federico Floriani, Kristian Guerra, Hugo Jalabert, Beata Modrzynska, Josefina Muñoz, Martino Passalacqua, Stefano Panterotto, Francisco Rosatelli, Barbara Sanchez Kane, Tuyet-Trinh-Ly MSGM
Alessandro Sartori
Ermenegildo Zegna
Massimo Giorgetti

Living with Art & Design
Casa Mollino
von Bartha
Private Basel Collection
Werner Aisslinger

Real Life
Venice Biennale 2016
Manifesta 11 Zurich
Art Basel,

TLmag 25_cover

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