In high-end furniture, Poltrona Frau stands as an ambassador of Italian excellence. With a rich heritage of craftsmanship, they consistently push the boundaries of design. The 10th edition of Downtown Design brings a remarkable collaboration that marries Italian artistry with African aesthetics. Poltrona Frau, renowned for its timeless pieces, joins celebrated menswear designer Ozwald Boateng to present the ‘Culture and Craft’ collection. This fusion of cultures and craftsmanship creates a unique collection for sophisticated living.
Italian Craftsmanship Meets African Aesthetics
The Middle East Debut
The ‘Culture and Craft’ collection debuted at London Design Week 2023, marking a significant foray into interiors for Ozwald Boateng. Known for his colorful bespoke patterns and intricate designs in menswear fashion, Boateng brings a fresh perspective to interior design.
The Middle East debut of this extraordinary collaboration at Downtown Design provides a first look at the reimagined classics of Poltrona Frau. Iconic pieces like the ‘Chester’ sofa and the ‘Vanity Fair’ chair receive a vibrant makeover with distinctive patterns developed by Boateng.
The ‘Chester’ sofa, originally conceived in 1912 by the company’s founder, is adorned with hand-embossed leather inspired by traditional Kente cloths—a nod to Boateng’s Ghanaian heritage. Each Chester sofa is meticulously crafted in Poltrona Frau’s atelier in Tolentino, Italy, mirroring the attention to detail in Boateng’s Saville Row suits.
The ‘Vanity Fair’ chair, a design from 1984, also transforms, becoming a canvas for Boateng’s signature ‘Tribal’ pattern. This distinctive print pays homage to the British designer’s Ghanaian roots and conveys a compelling narrative of sustainability and diversity.
The Culture and Craft collection extends beyond furniture to encompass lifestyle accessories, textiles, and wallpapers adorned with the Kente motif. African-inspired scented candles and a reimagined classic African Mancala game add depth and richness to the collection. This is a testament to the fusion of craftsmanship, sartorial precision, and product innovation.
The Vision Behind the Collaboration
Poltrona Frau’s Dedication to Innovation
Fahed Ghanim, CEO of Majid Al Futtaim – Lifestyle, the operator of Poltrona Frau in the Middle East, expresses excitement about this collaboration and Poltrona Frau’s dedication to innovation. He notes that while preserving its rich heritage, the brand remains relevant and sought after in an ever-evolving world of design and aesthetics.
Celebrating Innovative Design at Downtown Design
As the anchor event of Dubai Design Week, Downtown Design is the perfect stage for celebrating contemporary and high-quality design. Majid Al Futtaim Lifestyle, in partnership with Poltrona Frau, continues to raise the bar for innovative design solutions and brings an unparalleled artisanal experience to Dubai.
Ozwald Boateng’s Perspective
The Fusion of Traditions
Ozwald Boateng personally unveils his collaboration with Poltrona Frau at Downtown Design, highlighting the collection’s fusion of African patterns and Italian design excellence. He notes the instant connection through craft, construction, and attention to detail with Poltrona Frau. The process of making furniture, he says, is akin to his approach to tailoring, including the choice and development of materials.
For Boateng, this partnership represents tradition and the discovery of a new language within that tradition. He hopes that design enthusiasts in the region will appreciate the shared vision and the unique blend of cultures and craftsmanship in this collection.
Where to Experience the Culture and Craft Collection
The Poltrona Frau and Ozwald Boateng Culture and Craft collection will be on display during the 10th edition of Downtown Design from 8th to 11th November. Alongside this collaboration, you can also explore the Poltrona Frau and Ceccotti Collezioni DUO collection. After the design fair, all products will be available at the Poltrona Frau Jumeirah Showroom.
Poltrona Frau’s ‘Culture and Craft’ collection is a testament to the power of collaboration and innovation. By merging Italian craftsmanship with African aesthetics, this collection reimagines classic pieces and introduces a new language within the world of design. It’s an invitation to explore the rich narratives of sustainability, diversity, and tradition. If you’re passionate about design and culture, this collection at Downtown Design is a must-see, offering a glimpse into the future of sophisticated living.