Large dimensions, a strong appearance, significant volumes and a name that encapsulates its character: Concreto. The table and the bench are almost sculptures; crafted by mosaic master Simona Sporchia to a design by Francesco Rota, they were premiered by Paola Lenti within the 2023 collection.
The meeting between Paola Lenti and Sporchia three years ago gave rise to a collaboration based on a shared approach to materials: curious, experimental and inspired by nature. Starting from the Nerikomi, a traditional Japanese decorative technique used by the artist to create exclusive mosaics, they have developed their intuitions together to the point of revolutionizing the classical mosaic technique.
The Concreto table and bench are the latest outcomes of this collaboration. They are made up of five elements supported by two bases featuring the same thickness and geometries. Each element is crafted using a mix of limestone, clay, aggregates and colors; a technical material designed for outdoor use resulting from extensive experimentation, which has led to three variants, an essential one with delicate hues (“shaded,” as the artist likes to define it, for the “movements” that color creates on the surfaces depending on how it is deposited during casting), Clastos and Lias.
The first finish offers soft color shades ranging from powder pink to powder blue; the surface, subjected to a hand-sanding process, has a velvety texture that is pleasant to the touch.
On the other hand, Lias is decorated with ceramic tesserae, produced and cut by hand by Sporchia using the Nerikomi Japanese technique. They are inlaid into the base material according to hues combinations or contrasts designed for each variant and with the unmistakable sensitivity to color that has always distinguished Paola Lenti creations.
Clastos instead is identified by decorations consisting in irregular geometrical shapes inspired by organic forms. “Concreto is a project conceived to develop a dialogue between different ‘themes’ united by a same basic color tone,” Sporchia explained. “And, at the same time, to offer an essay of the many possibilities of customization, modulated on the tastes of the public.”
As with most of Paola Lenti’s collections, the uniqueness lies in the exclusive crafts applied to materials, always manually carried out with expertise and dexterity, which make each piece non-replicable works featuring both tactile and visual beauty, equally ideal for interior spaces.