Acqua Alta for Rubelli

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I Sestieri, Dorsoduro
I Sestieri, Cannaregio
La Giudecca
I Sestieri, Cannaregio
La Salina
“The high water phenomenon is Nature’s envy: it is an attempt to create a lagoon over the city of Venice.” Tiziano Scarpa

Acqua Alta is a project that was conceived from the desire to give greater value to a cultural and historical heritage that is incomparable: the city of Venice. The territory of Veneto and Venice, in particular, are the guardians of the history, the techniques and the numerous secrets of artisans which are unique. Important traditions distinguish this city which for centuries has been a center of trade and commerce with the rest of the world. Amongst these, textile art with its precious fabrics to glass-blowing in Murano, from essences and spices, precious passe-partout for exchanges within the Mediterranean. Acqua Alta therefore, is the tie that binds all these techniques together starting rom the unique natural phenomenon that embraces them all: water as a means of transport, water as a source of energy, water as a complexity that influences the lives of its citizens often leaving indelible signs. These reflections have become the inspiration for the first Acqua Alta collection that includes a series of precious jacquard tapestries, an exclusive ambiance fragrance diffuser made of blown glass, a marble lamp and a vase. Acqua Alta is the consequence of the careful observation of different effects provoked by this particular and natural phenomenon which is the high tide.
The intention for creating our collection stems from the wish to translate a theme that is important and sensitive yet one that provides a constant source of inspiration for the design and development of objects that adapt like water flows to a contemporary lifestyle.

Production: Rubelli ©2013
Photo credits: Cristina Galliena Bohman, Mauro Tittoto, Marco Franceschin

Research on La Giudecca

From a photo taken to some Venice’s steps, was born the idea to recreate the same effect of steps’s depth and the color gradation of the same wet from the water into an object. The carpet incorporates the effect of uneven gradation of color and aspects of erosion of the marble steps, through a choice of materials and finishes that are inspired directly by real details. The heights of the steps are recreated with a slight three-dimensional effect, while the texture, the color and shape of the carpet are inspired directly from the original photo taken on site.

Research on Murano

The theme of the collection has inspired the creation of yet another object, an ambiance fragrance diffuser that recollects the materials, the shapes and in particular, the essences that conduct the fil-rouge of this project. The idea was to utilize a container of hand blown glass from Murano, to hold an exclusive ambiance fragrance which could be absorbed and gradually diffused by three pieces of ceramic biscuit that take on the same forms as the bricole, the wooden logs of the dolphin structures that characteristically mark the Venetian lagoon. Lorenzo Dante Ferro, the last Venetian Master perfumer collaborated together with us to provide the most natural and pleasurable olfactive expression suggested by the flora of the Venetian lagoon.

Research on I Sestieri

Following the noble tradition of the Venetian city in the production and commerce of luxury fabrics, two jacquard textiles were developed: Cannaregio and Dorsoduro. The aim is to recreate - through the plots of the fabric - all the colors and textures that with time have appeared on the plasters and marbles of the Venetian walls, §due to the erosive action of sea water. After a long research along the streets of Venice, by capturing the most different combinations of color gradients and textures, Rubelli developed two jacquard fabrics to be expressed in a variety of uses: tapestries, curtains, upholstery.

Research on La Salina

The erosive effect of the sea water on the Venetian marbles, from the stairs to the columns, is here reproduced on a table lamp, realized in extremely thin and precious Italian marble. The action of the machine, which slowly digs the block of marble, giving shape to the object, is accompanied by the able hand of a craftsman from the Venetian area, Ermenegildo Sartori. The peculiar texture is even more shown when the LED light inside the lamp is switched on. As the action of the water on the Venetian marbles, the surface is irregular on the base, becoming more and more smooth on the top of the lamp.

Research on Passerelle

These objects are inspired by the structures that are quickly assembled along the Venetian streets during the aqua alta phenomena. The collection borns from the challenge of representing a delicate subject through the hand craft art of the borosilicate glass blown by the Master Massimo Lunardon. Suspended on thin legs, they’re graceful and inflexible vases; they try to protect the contents as the typical Venetian walkways do, when they preserve people to get wet by the impending rise of the water level.