Italian Interior Design Products, Inspired by Japan

While on a tour last month of Southern Italy, sponsored by the Italian Trade Commission, I was introduced to a number of gifted artisans whose work is bold, beautiful and intrically patterned. One of them is ART sri, an architect-led firm that designs products for residential and commercial interiors. A+A recently interviewed its founder via email:

What’s the H=history of your company?
Architect Paolo Bandiello founded ART srl, a company that develops architectural and interior design products, making use of a remarkable sensitivity toward social and urban processes, which it expresses by means of the products. From 1994 to present, it has collaborationed with Italian and international brands. In ART’s portfolio are: Kubico – “sguardi sul territorio” (Milan, IT); Studio Cibic (Pitti Uomo, Florence, IT); Gas Blue Jeans (Cologne, DE); Meltin’Pot (Paris – FR; Cologne, Munich, Berlin – DE) and many more.

Who designs and makes them?
The projects are by Paolo Bandiello for ART srl ( – Casarano, Salento area, IT), and their creation is entrusted to the Fras Project labs ( – Galatina, Salento area, IT) to assert its great Italian craft and manufacturing expertise.

The intent of their design?
ART srl wants to anticipate the wider development of a new Interiors concept: a model of integration for several artistic expressions; an itinerary enriched by the exchanges and the cultural relations between unconventional arts and traditional ones; a vehicle that may pull art into daily environments, not necessarily of an artistic kind.

The inspiration for their design?
The design of ART’s projects is inspired by the search for products which belong to past ages, attempting to make them more modern and finding new identities for them. In the case of the KINU project ( the inspiration comes from a journey to Japan, where wood is the main material through which almost every interior design element is created. The care given to the details of each item enriches its value.

Your target market?
ART srl has basically young customers as its target market. In addition, contract furniture and Horeca furniture are ART’s target market fields (i.e. business areas) of reference.

The challenge of making them?
ART’s challenge is to create small productions of limited and numbered series of elements and to commercialize them on the market.

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