As far as collaborations go, this is surely one of the more quirky—and visually gratifying. Swiss design brand Vitra, which acquired the Finnish company Artek last year, has found a particularly original way to illustrate this merging of two venerable European brands: by constructing an enviably beautiful, but convincingly lived-in loft apartment, furnished entirely with objects manufactured by both companies.
Apartment-as-showroom hardly counts as a novel idea, but Vitra has gone the extra step of conceiving the apartment as the home of a fictional couple—Finnish Harri and German Astrid—whose shared life and combined artistic professions (he’s a musician, she’s a set designer) are given esthetic expression by the apartment’s visually rich tableaux.
The interior design team at Studio Ilse was called upon to bring the apartment to authentic life, and they deserve kudos for imbuing the loft with the kind of warmth and casual elegance—no, we won’t go into the net value of all those Aalto, Eames and Noguchi treasures—that one can actually imagine a sophisticated couple like Harri and Astrid creating for themselves. (Harri’s piano and Astrid’s mood board are particularly inspired touches).
Visitors to the Vitra campus in Weil am Rhein, Germany, will want to drop by for a visit; the loft will be on view to the public for the rest of the year.