Transatlántico exhibition “forms a bridge” between Latin American and European design

Transatlantico exhibition

Brutalist furniture by Rick Owens, a shaggy pink sofa and ethereal lighting feature in Transatlántico, an exhibition of Latin American and European sculptural design presented by Galerie Philia in Mexico City.

Transatlántico brings together furniture and ornaments by emerging Latin American designers from Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Argentina, Venezuela, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.

Waldo sofa
Top: a wall hanging by Mexican studio Caralarga. Above: Pietro Franceschini presents his Waldo sofa, among other seating

Their pieces are presented alongside work by leading European designers such as Pietro Franceschini and Pierre De Valck, some of whom are showing in Mexico for the first time.

“The aim was to create an authentic, specialised event around the Latin American design scene and its very distinct identity, but also include new collections by European designers,” Transatlántico co-curator Alban Roger told Dezeen.

“We wanted to establish a dialogue between the two continents, with both their own distinctive styles but also strong inter-influences.”

Carob wood furniture by Cristián Mohaded features in the exhibition

In line with this theme, a shaggy pink “yeti” sofa by St Petersburg-based artist Vladimir Naumov for Missana Lab is included alongside delicate carob wood furniture by Argentinian designer Cristián Mohaded, who explores carpentry using native materials from his birth country.

An ethereal light named Ghost Pendant was crafted by Mexican designers Héctor Esrawe and Emiliano Godoy and Los-Angeles born designer Brian Thoreen, using handblown glass, silicon tubing and LED lights.

Transatlantico exhibition
Vladimir Naumov offers a shaggy pink sofa

Other pieces include dark-coloured brutalist furniture by Paris-based American fashion designer Rick Owens that is made from a mixture of bronze and camel skin, as well as Mexico City-based Platalea Studio‘s playful Happiness Bench formed from three curvy slabs of pink and brown terrazzo.

“We reached out to talents we believe in and who fell within our criteria of sculptural design,” explained co-curator Jorge Brown, with regard to how Galeria Philia selected the participating designers.

“Our main criteria was the originality of their design exploration but also their creative research on various materials and sculptural techniques.”

According to Galerie Philia, sustainability was also a factor in Transátlantico’s curatorial ethos.

This is reflected in pieces such as a series of delicately woven wall hangings by Mexican artisanal studio Caralarga, which are crafted using raw cotton yarn and discarded fabric waste.

Ghost Pendant
Ghost Pendant is a light by Héctor Esrawe and Emiliano Godoy and Brian Thoreen

Colombian designer Alejandra Aristizábal also presents textile wall hangings that resemble jumbo rolls of sewing thread, although hers are made from fique – a natural fibre from the Andean region that has historically been used to create ropes and hammocks.

“Transatlántico is founded on the idea of forming a transatlantic bridge between the contrasting cultural and artistic worlds of Europe and Latin America, identifying how we establish a creative discourse across the social boundaries associated with the geography that divides us,” said Galerie Philia co-founder Ygaël Attali.

Furniture by Rick Owens
Rick Owens presents a selection of brutalist bronze furniture

With galleries in Geneva, New York City and Singapore, Galerie Philia is an international contemporary design and art gallery that also presents group exhibitions at temporary spaces around the world.

Previous Galerie Philia exhibitions include a furniture show in Manhattan’s Walker Tower and an exhibition presenting emerging Italian designers’ responses to Rick Owens’ work in Milan.

Happiness Bench
Happiness Bench is playful terrazzo seating by Platalea Studio

The photography is courtesy of Galerie Philia.

Transátlantico is on show at House of Kirschner‘s gallery space, Avenida Ejército Nacional 676, in Mexico City from 8 to 12 February 2022. See Dezeen Events Guide for an up-to-date list of architecture and design events taking place around the world.

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