UK designer Genevieve Bennett is taking leather to a new level. Recently, 3rings has seen some interesting applications with the tried-and-true material (see digital leather and leather tiles). It almost seems as if leather is trying to shed its white man’s study reputation—you know, the paisley walls, wingback chairs, hunting trophies. Masculine as it may have been for so very long, leather is now offering a softer side.
Leather wall sculpture. Designed by Genevieve Bennett.
Stucco, the wall panels designed by Bennett, crafts leather into sculpture—blooms and leaves and organic shapes of unidentifiable flora like something from an O’Keefe painting. In short, a feminine interpretation. Available in a standard 77 cm x 110 cm panel, Stucco is also customizable—shape, size, and color. Hand-sculpted and pieced, the leather panels are part painting, part wallcovering, and part sculpture. In white, it’s crisp and pristine enough for the Hamptons. In green, it’s perfect for a Boulder nest. In black, it’s appropriate for a Brooklyn loft. The folds of flowers, the layers of leaves, the tiers of polka dots all work to effect a wall panel with dimensional interest—what a relief!
Genevieve Bennett has succeeded in creating a multifaceted product out of a material that was virtually exhausted. The fluted edges and glyphic grooves of Stucco mandate a shift in how we perceive leather. When a designer finds a way to reinvigorate a material, it’s a sign of artistry and foresight—to see what others cannot see evinces a perceptive mind. In the words of odd clairvoyant and theosophist C.W. Leadbeater, “It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive.”