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Pushing boundaries: Paolo Castelli's innovative superyacht furniture

29 March 2018

Founded over two decades ago by the eponymous designer, who hails from a line of fine woodworkers and furniture craftsmen, Paolo Castelli offers a full range of interior design services for projects large and small. Proudly offering a host of “Made in Italy” products and services, the brand has worked on a number of notable projects including Le Galleria d’Italia and the Mandarin Oriental in Milan, the Alitalia Dolce Vita lounge in Rome’s Fiumicino Airport, the award-winning Italian Pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo, the Printemps Haussmann department store in Paris and the 290 metre Fincantieri cruise ship Costa Favolosa.

However, when it comes to your yacht, it is in furniture that Paolo Castelli truly excels, as its work on private residences across Europe attests. The brand currently offers two furniture collections: Domodinamica, and most recently, Inspiration. Evolving out of the Castelli family woodworking heritage and a desire to collaborate with renowned designers, Domodinamica offers a range of chairs, sofas, tables, beds and accessories created in partnership with names including Karim Rashid, Alessandro Mendini and Luca Scacchetti. Accordingly, the collection is hugely varied and puts a focus on pushing the boundaries of furniture design to the extreme. Take, for example, Angelo Micheli’s Queen sofa crafted in cement with an open back of rectangular blocks, or Matali Crasset’s modular Hi-Pouf design, which can act as a table, chair or stool and be stacked away when not in use.

The sculptural Anodine room screen with stems in a galvanised matt gold and bronze finish

The Inspiration range, launched in 2012, strives to blur the line between fine art and furniture by taking its design cues from the great architects and artists of the mid-19th century, including Gio Ponti, Le Corbusier, Frank Lloyd Wright and Mies van der Rohe. The result is an expansive collection of tables, chairs, sofas, bookcases, accessories and lighting that blend modern techniques and materials with some of the greatest design innovations of the past century. Glazed ceramic coffee tables, consoles and desks in deepest onyx are complemented by asymmetric brass legs, while sleek velvet sofas and chaise longues are lifted on chicly slender golden legs guaranteed to stand out in any saloon; lighting is sculptural in form and innovative in its use of materials.

Of course, in line with the company’s heritage and its commitment to fine craftsmanship, each and every piece from the Inspiration and Domodinamica ranges is handmade in Italy. Over the decades Paolo Castelli has built up a trusted network of artisans, designers and engineers across the country that recognise the brand’s need for quality and attention to detail while retaining the soul provided through the use of traditional production methods.

The Galaxy wall lamp

“We carry a route between design and art by addressing an audience sensitive to the evolution of international living and attentive to the atmosphere you breathe in your home,” explains founder Paolo Castelli of the brand’s ethos. “This route brings us closer to our roots, using materials enriched and enhanced by Italian craftsmanship and marked by unique items such as artworks.”

Featured in design exhibitions across the globe, the Kali table lamp from the Inspiration collection is currently on view at the Triennale Design Museum in Milan and the Olimpiona floor lamp, designed by Denis Santachiara for the Domodinamica collection will be on display at the Dongdaemun museum in Seoul later this year. This month the company will open its first showrooms in Paris and London, having opened showrooms in China and India last year.