With his new collection of bags designed for Colombo, Arik Levy talks about his eclectic design approach that contaminates knowledge and disciplines

Arik Levy’s personality in design is rather like his monolithic sculptures: it has a very compact, solid and clearly defined soul, but expresses itself in every case with different facets that give each project an identity in its own right.

Trained at the Art Center Europe in Switzerland, Arik considers himself essentially an artist, but he does not hesitate to venture into the most varied fields, ranging from sculpture to installations, product design and set design for contemporary dance and opera.

In fact, one of his works in progress is a medical device for post-surgical care for kidney stones.

Although his stylistic code is clearly recognizable, his distinctive feature lies in his approach to thought, which leads him to reject any specialized logic and to cope with the most disparate challenges.

I’m interested in learning something different every time,” says the artist-designer.

“Taking knowledge from one industry to another. Mingling things and ideas that can work together. Giving each work a value that enables it to stand out, and avoiding the standardized approach that dominates so many creative fields today.”

One of his latest projects is an exclusive capsule collection of bags designed for Colombo, a Milan-based luxury brand specializing in leather accessories.

Arik Levy’s Sculptural Collection has a twofold interpretation: it includes the creation of a new model, the Sculptural Bag, and a revisitation of Dione, an iconic model of the Maison.

The former draws inspiration from the artist’s sculptural work. It is a notably compact volume, with asymmetrical and angular forms created by a work of material subtraction related to the well-known series of Rock sculptures.

The second comes from an explicit process of fusion that engrafts the figurative elements of the Rock, Rock Growth and Fixing Nature series onto the crocodile skin of the Dione model.

The result is a collectible art bag, also available with a special 14-karat gold handle that reproduces a section of the Facet sculpture.

“I’ve projected my artistic world onto objects that represent luxury and high craftsmanship,” comments Levy. “I wanted to give a new, more contemporary vision to Colombo’s heritage and classical quality. This was not a self-referential operation. If I want to talk about myself, I do it through my artworks.

Rather, I wanted to create a match, one between art and fashion, that would produce an unprecedented result, different from anything that already exists.

Projects for companies must always give precise answers to the clients’ needs and enable them to grow. To design the Sculptural Collection, I had to work with the skilled master craftworkers who cut the leather and make the bags.

I figured out what I could do and what my limits would be. I also realized that crocodile skin scales resemble the facets of my prismatic sculptures. I felt deeply attuned to this material, which I loved to understand and work with. Once again, I had the chance to discover something new.”