A solid start

With the “UNO” table collection, Moritz Bannach has launched his own studio in style. We talked to him about pie in the sky and those “wow” moments.
by Anna Moldenhauer | 2/28/2020

A table with character, going by the name “Abbondio”. A good three meters in length and with two legs arranged in a cross formation, it is solid in appearance. It’s only on second glance that you notice the modular structure, which thanks to a slotting system makes it possible to knock it down into seven parts. The bold color scheme with sections in rose, orange, green and red adds additional accents. “An object should be able to stand on its own,” quips Moritz Bannach. The designer came up with the “Abbondio” and supplemented it with three other dining and conference tables to form the “UNO” collection. “UNO” refuses to shy away from contrasts: In color and form, the table is the clear center of the room, yet its presence does not overwhelm it. Be a purist, but show your colors – that’s the formula behind it. “Colors have been very much part of my life since childhood,” explains Bannach. His mother, a graphic designer, introduced him to art. He finds particular inspiration in the works by the Memphis group in Milan and by Josef Albers, Donald Judd and Barnett Newman. His own designs generally start with sketching freehand until the design language becomes clear, and that’s when the detail work begins.

For the tables’ production, he found craft workshops in his home city of Berlin, which were able to implement his ideas step by step. “One-on-ones and the specialist skills of the tradesmen are both incredibly important to me; you learn what handling the materials is all about,” says Bannach. It wasn’t always clear that he would become a designer. “I’m self-taught,” he says. The supposed flaw of having studied landscape architecture is what now gives him the freedom to think outside the predetermined channels. His involvement in the furniture industry began with a student job at Berlin furniture manufacturer Dopo Domani. “It was a ‘wow’ moment that brought me into the world of interior design,” says Moritz Bannach. What was once just a job on the side has since evolved into a lengthy collaboration – the team took him with them to the Salone del Mobile in Milan and to imm cologne and involved him in the organizational processes between retailers, manufacturers, designers and architects. “I still benefit from that knowledge today,” says Bannach. It was during that time that the idea of having his own studio started to take shape. “First it was just pie in the sky, but at some point I simply decided I’d give it a try,” he says.

The BANNACH label has been a reality since 2018 and “UNO” has already been awarded its first accolades. At this year’s imm cologne, manufacturer Interlübke selected his “Abbondio” table to present on its exhibition stand in this year’s colors of Burgundy and Interblue. “It was a huge opportunity,” says Moritz Bannach. In parallel, he is also contributing to the development of the “Am Tacheles” construction project in Berlin by architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron. Meanwhile, at the Salone del Mobile 2020, he is planning to contribute “Abbondio” to a group exhibition in the heart of Milan’s Brera design district. Coming products should see smaller dimensions and different materials: Bannach is experimenting with glass, ceramics and natural stone. “I’m excited about what’s to come,” he says.

"Abbondio" by BANNACH