The seating Monica Armani has created for KFF is named after Gaia, mother goddess of the Earth in Ancient Greek mythology. Seven upholstered and softly rounded backrest elements provide ergonomic support for the sitter. The frame with a four legs or a rocker base is also very refined, serving to underscore the “flowery” impression the seating makes. Armani spent one and a half years realizing the project gradually advancing it from drawing to model, from 3D model to life-size prototype. The design toys with contrasts thanks to the use of soft hues – from a light rose through to fresh mint and accents of strong violet and flush reddish orange through to warm browns. Moreover, the upholstery can have leather or fabric covers. Floral design need not always come packed in saccharine colors, however, as KFF recently demonstrated at the Salone del Mobile2019: To emphasize the extraordinary character of the chair, in Milan “Gaia” was clothed firmly in black. “Essentially, what counts is the design, not the color,” suggests Armani.
And the very varied floral family is growing fast: At the start of the year, the collection was expanded to include the “Gaia Lounge” chair, the “Gaia Counter Chair” and the “Gaia Calice” armchair. There’s a “Gaia” family member for every occasion: If you want to withdraw a bit, for example, then nestle in the “Gaia Calice” with its 114-centimeter-high backrest. By contrast, “Gaia Lounge” is far more communicative, with a height of 69 centimeters, whereby it is just as comfortable. The Italian architect and designer next wants to come up with a small sofa. The “Gaia’s” playful shape is an interesting addition to Armani’s oeuvre, which is otherwise characterized by a degree of geometric stringency. It is no coincidence that Armani’s great role model is none other than her father Marcello, a Rationalist architect who designed her parent’s house to boast a lot of glass and clear lines. “I grew up surrounded by design and architecture so it was only normal that I continued down that path,” she recalls.