Design Talks presents an exclusive interview with the unique and world-famous Carlo Donati. Born from Home’Society‘s desire to explore all things interior design, Design Talks includes interviews with leading architects, interior designers, and showrooms to discover and discuss what is trending and the whole creative process of any project.
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Carlo Donati was the guest of the second edition of Design Talks. With an extensive curriculum and experience in several countries, Carlo Donati Studio is a reference in interior design, not only in Italy but also worldwide. His inspirations range from architectural landmarks and Italian design references of post-war modernism, and abstract scenography and the world of cinema. The combination of these multiple sources of ideas in the creation of surprising projects, full of personality and bold design, is proof of his mastery.
The adaptation to each location’s history, style, and materials is also a highlight of his work, as exemplified by his projects in the Aeolian Islands, Maldives, and Saint Moritz. As Carlo Donati states, ‘each project has to be unique, we are focused on doing bespoke furniture and design unique pieces of furniture for every house.’
Carlo Donati has started his career by working for a couple of important firms in architecture in Milan, such as Studio Berlgiojoso and Studio Gregotti. He then moved to the United States and started working as an architecture consultant for Gianni Versace. Although he refers to Versace style as pretty much different from his own, it was indeed a design reference due to its boldness and creativity.
Gio Ponti, Osvaldo Borsani, Franco Albini, Italian design references of the post-war modernism, as well as Mies van der Rohe, the abstract scenography by Bob Wilson and even the interiors of movies like the ones of Stanley Kubrick and Quentin Tarantino are other of the multiple sources of inspiration expressed in Donati’s design style, that he defines as ‘contemporary but with deep roots in the past.’
After this experience in the USA, Carlo Donati has proceeded to the creation of his own firm – Carlo Donati Studio, working as well for other brands like Aldo Coppola, Liberty of London, Linea Più, and Colefax & Fowler. Attention to detail, a careful choice of colors and textures, and unexpected combinations are common threads the Studio uses throughout all its work. Projects with personality and that express the local style and materials are one of Carlo Donati’s specialties.
Whether it is residential design, villa, or even commercial projects, the Studio is regarded as one of the most renowned experts in Italy and worldwide. Despite this, Carlo Donati does not hesitate to confess that if he could only do one kind of project until the end of his career, he would choose hotels and resorts, because of the possibility to design for multiple clients, encompassing different tastes and styles, at a more balanced pace.
To avoid standardization and assure that each project reflects a strong personality, Carlo Donati has created his own design furniture line. Craftsmanship is a keystone of this process. Italy presents a well-known tradition of craftsmanship, with some of the best artists of the world, ready to tackle challenging projects and to deal with different materials. Carlo Donati refers as well the expertise of Portuguese artisans and highlights some of the Home’s Society products he believes to be a good match for the Studios’s Style, such as LURAY Side Table, KOI Rug, GOBI Rug, and MURSI Rug.