After months spent isolating and staying indoors, the desire to get outside and bask in the sunshine is as strong as it’s ever been. Enter Cassina’s Perspective Goes Outdoors. The multi-piece offering – a concerted effort between Patricia Urquiola, Philippe Starck and Rodolfo Dordoni – feels fresh and invigorating, combining influences that span from 1950s seaside resorts to Greenland to nature itself. Along with the just-created elements, the comprehensive series also includes iconic classics by Charlotte Perriand and Le Corbuser refashioned for outdoor use.
Philippe Strack describes his contribution as a “lifestyle proposition” rather than a project, one that takes direct inspiration from the natural environments it’s intended for and underscores it with an undeniably relaxed elegance. Marrying organic materials like sand-blasted solid teak, die-cast aluminum and hand-woven rope with “almost primitive” forms, the pieces in Starck’s series – an armchair, two- and three-seater sofas and a coffee table in two heights – possess a welcoming aesthetic that is heightened by its comfort. Looking to offer the same attributes as feather-down padding, Fenc-e Nature uses a special air-blown polyester fibre and memory foam composite (SoloSoff) to pad the cushions, which are then wrapped in a tactile and elastic polyurethane for ultimate softness. Wide plank armrests double as convenient surfaces and a simple Asian-architectural inspired mechanism across the back – a singular teak pole anchored by two carved wooden pegs – allows for the seat’s incline to be easily moved from a relaxed position to a more upright and conversational one.
Invoking the spirit of 1950s seaside holiday resorts, Rodolfo Dordoni sophisticated family of offerings includes the Sail Out modular sofa, which is informed by a somewhat surprising muse – the inflatable canvas mattress. To achieve its distinct look, individual padded strips (five, six or seven) are inserted into stitched pockets in the upholstery, resulting in a pillow-top-like expanse whose luxury is boosted by its Solosoff padding. A grey gros-grain trim adds sartorial detailing, while the teak frame and built-in side table enhance the tactility. Sail Out’s padded backrests are available in two heights and an interlocking mechanism – similar to that found in a car’s headrest – incorporated in the teak frame allows them to be easily interchangeable. Rounding out the living space selections are compact and stackable solid teak armchairs accented by hand-woven polypropylene rope, a concrete-topped low-slung teak coffee table and generous pouffe in two sizes.
For al fresco meals, Dordoni created the Dine Out series, comprised of a stackable chair (in matching style and materials as its living room sibling) and coordinating dining table with shapely conical base. Available in two versions – rectangular (in two sizes) or round – the Dine Out table deftly mixes materials: bases can be concrete or terrazzo and topped with surfaces in teak, teak and concrete or terrazzo.
While travelling through Greenland, Patricia Urquiola was inspired to create her playful “love bed” after seeing the all the “little trampolines outside locals’ houses.” Defined by its strong personality, the circular sofa with canopy provides a welcoming island-like retreat in large open spaces. Three generously stuffed backrest cushions form a relaxing support, while two other types of cushions layered on top add to the sense of envelopment. Hand-woven polypropylene and nylon rope (mélange or multi-colour) is wrapped around the lacquered stainless steel structure to provide decoration and to hold the self-supporting PVC and polyester seat and umbrella. (A low canopy-less version is also available.) Urquiola also reimagined her Bowy low tables – designed in 2018 to complement the indoor sofa of the same name – for outdoor use through a calculated use of materials: mud or ivory textured aluminum sheeting becomes the tapered base and recycled glass-reinforced plastic surfaces (in red and white or grey and white) are swapped in for the lacquered glass or natural wood tops. The tables – offered in two heights – can be nested together or used separately.
The 90-year-old furniture-maker expands to the exterior with new pieces by Patricia Urquiola, Philippe Starck and Rodolfo Dordoni.