The design conference was held at the historic Fornace Orsoni in Venice

On Thursday 18 October, The importance and evolution of color was the third and last conference in the cycle on color organized at Fornace Orsoni, the historic Venetian ceramics workshop that since 1888 has created, with remarkable skill, Venetian enamels, colored gold leaf and 24k gold leaf mosaic tiles.

After the others on architecture and art, this conference was on design: the architect and designer Giulio Cappellini and the color designer Vicky Syriopoulou conversed with the architects Carlo Colombo and Carolina Suels in a dialogue moderated by Katrin Cosseta, a journalist for Interni.

After the welcoming remarks by Sonia De Rossi, D&A Consultant, and Riccardo Bisazza, president of Orsoni, the conversation turned to the site itself, the evocative (and immersive) Color Library that contains over 3500 different tones and hues of enamel in Venetian glass paste. The project of restoration of the old workshop has been done by the design studio DueBarraDue.

Vicky Syriopoulou put the accent on how color can attract us prior to form. “First we perceive the color, and then we see it,” she said, citing as an example the passage from red to blue: red reaches our senses quickly, while the perception slows down for darker colors.

The importance of neuroaesthetics was also emphasized, the discipline based on physics and neuroscience, involving the cognitive sciences and aesthetics to study the neural mechanisms behind the aesthetic perception of works of art.

The color designer then invited the audience to observe the four products created in the context of the Prisma Project, presented at Superloft 2018 set up by Giulio Cappellini during the FuoriSalone in Milan.

The material fired in the historic kilns of Orsoni was reinterpreted by four emerging young designers – Matteo Agati, Térence Coton, Gustavo Martini and Giulio Masciocchi – graduates of Istituto Marangoni, where the artistic director is Giulio Cappellini.

The results are four projects that represent a synthesis of Venetian crafts mastery and design innovation: a revisitation of classics, of the ancient Byzantine working techniques, in a contemporary, artistic way. The colors of the Venetian glazes selected for the works bring out their aesthetic virtues, become living design material.

Carlo Colombo, architect and designer, the son of furniture makers from Brianza, discovered by the talent scout Giulio Cappellini, talked about the importance of color in architectural design. The architect Carolina Suels, born in Caracas, with a degree from Venezuela and specialized studies in Milan, focuses on research in the field of materials.

Giulio Cappellini emphasized that color, chosen with great freedom, plays the role of making architectural spaces evolve. He then concluded the conference by saying that color is no longer just to look at, but also to touch.

And what better place for such a statement than the interior of the Color Library, where the color of Venetian enamels is a real substance, a materic legacy, as well as bearing witness to fine Italian craftsmanship?

An immersive place in all senses of the term. Sounds from the Library is the original project created by D20 Art Lab of Cà Foscari: a spatialization of sound that brings out the beauty of the setting and the unique quality of handmade mosaics. Bertrand Duchaufour, profumiere of TecnicoFlor, on the other hand, has created Tu m’emerveilles!, the fragrance of the Color Library.