An undisputed queen of contemporary design, Patricia Urquiola has forced people the world over to learn to pronounce the Spanish "Q." Perhaps due to her training as an architect, her furniture designs celebrate structure. They also incorporate color and texture, along with feminine shapes and a playful spirit. Such is the case with Caboche, the pop-together lamp she co-designed with Eliana Gerotto.
1. Caboche for Foscarini
Some of Urquiola's most iconic pieces come from the world of outdoor furniture. Her Maia Collection, for example, combines new materials with old-world weaving, creating a lush pattern against a streamlined frame.
2. Relax Armchair for Kettal
Tropicalia also revels in criss-crossing surfaces. With its prismatic color, Tropicalia reminds me of a child's Spirograph, and Moroso seems to agree, explaining "the wrapping of thread works like pencil lines."
3. Tropicalia Cocoon for Moroso
Inspired by severe 1800's fashion with rigid undergarments beneath bell-shaped skirts, Crinoline is one of Urquiola's most iconic chairs. With a "double-shell silhouette," the chair is dramatic, feminine, and romantic.
4. Crinoline Armchair for B&B Italia
The designer's penchant for round curves and soft textures gets encapsulated in the velvet version of Redondo, a small quilted armchair that cradles its user in sensual pleasure. Once you're sitting in Redondo, you never want to leave it. I can attest to this from personal experience-and I was almost inconsolable at having to abandon my sybaritic throne.
5. Redondo for Moroso
Hard surfaces also get transformed in Urquiola's universe, where even a simple occasional table can become a jewel-like charm.
6. Shimmer for Glas Italia
In Italian, the word "Credenza" refers to both a cupboard and a belief, which gives Urquiola's capsule collection of 2016 extra meaning, especially since it's "inspired by the windows of holy sites" such as Cologne's Cathedral. Designed in collaboration with Federico Pepe, AKA Le Dictateur, Credenza displays rich colors and graphic shapes.
7. Credenza for Spazio Pontaccio
Urquiola is also adept at creating larger pieces such as the 550 Beam Sofa System, which combines sofas, chaise lounges, corner units, and tables on a beam base. The base is geometric "with a strong aesthetic impact," while the seating configurations are comfortable and inviting.
8. 550 Beam Sofa System for Cassina
For more information, visit www.patriciaurquiola.com.