Alchemy of Italian design: the golden age of décor
The head of ALTER EGO Milan office, Anna Chincoli, continues to introduce us to unique Italian manufacturers. This time she will reveal the secrets of an amazing brand Alchymia.
It is impossible to confuse the Alchymia company with any other - once you see the works of art they create (and it would be wrong to name their products in another way), you will never forget them. These are, first of all, large-scale panels with rich décor that develops into floristic, animalistic or architectural plots. Only artisans of past centuries were capable of crafting the décor items with ultimate devotion and creativity. How does the company manage to preserve and reproduce the most complex decorative techniques nowadays?
One of the answers to this question lies in company’s philosophy, formulated by its founder, the decorator Lucio Doro: "Alchymia is synonymous with decorative art." Lucio studied the vanishing decorative techniques and began to apply them in the manufacture of furniture and interior items, including wall panels. It was then that Alchymia developed a unique style with specific plots, abundance of details and masterful execution, which has constituted its glory for over 50 years. Today the traditions of the company as an authentic art family are carried on by Lucio Doro’s children and grandchildren. One of the main Alchymia’s secrets is in the combination of three directions - Atelier, Art Workshop and Laboratory. It is here that masterpieces are born, students are trained and creative experiments are carried out.
The collection of almost forgotten decorative crafts assembled by company’s founder was adapted to state-of-the-art technologies used in furniture production. Thus, many rare techniques mastered only by a few craftsmen around the world were revealed to the modern public. And this is Alchymia's important cultural contribution to the preservation and development of decorative arts.
For instance, the new “Sense of Touch” collection shows the techniques of straw finishing and mica inlay. Once, straw products were very popular in Europe, but today just a few artists know all the intricacies of this technique. Mica finishing is a labor-intensive process, it set off a trend at the beginning of the 17th century. A layered mineral with soft pearl glimmer is divided into thinnest lamellas, that are used for surface decoration.
Another rare technique applied in the Alchymia workshop is liquid metal. It allows to create the thinnest metallized coating of various shapes and shades. Unlike coating with metal lacquer or gold leaf, the application of a weightless layer of metal microparticles is more difficult and time-consuming. However, no other manufacturer applies this technique as widely as Alchymia. The thing is that this innovative material goes together only with considerable artistic talent and value, and its use in simple projects would be unjustifiably expensive.
The famous “Limited Edition” collection could only appear in this amazing, creative environment. It was inspired by the academic culture, powerful artistic experience and traditions of old craft workshops, including those of the Renaissance period. That is why the items that make up the essence of the collection are not just wall decoration materials, but genuine works of art. Each panel is unique. It is designed and embodied upon the customer’s or designer’s request from the first pencil sketches to the final finishes and does not provide a second copy. The Limited Edition is a catalog of rare treasures that are destined not only to give their owners strong emotions, but also to become, over the years, a profitable investment.
It is not surprising that ALTER EGO and Alchymia have developed long-term friendly and partnership relations. They share a creative approach to their work and the scale of projects. Alchymia delivers one-of-a-kind wall finishing materials that can be used in premium design and fit-out of country houses, city residences, penthouses, headquarters and yachts. Here is what Davide Doro, the heir and head of the Atelier, says about this collaboration: “Our historical mission is to develop decorative arts, referring to the traditions of the past, endorsing a dialogue with the present and boldly facing the future. Moreover, we are glad that these original ideas find a response in the hearts of our partners from ALTER EGO and their Сustomers. We create products that are unique and exclusive in many ways and require large-scale designs, luxurious interiors and outstanding opportunities. We are delighted that ALTER EGO implements them brilliantly!”