Nipa Doshi and Jonathan Levien Unveil New Kvadrat Collection at London Design Festival
“Working with Kvadrat, there wasn’t a set brief so much as an invitation to propose design directions. From the outset, we decided to conceive a curtain-fabric collection. Early explorations included architectural textures and pointillism, concepts we presented as prints, castings, and transparent colored panels. For the color palette, we researched Le Corbusier’s tapestries and paintings in Chandigarh, India, and were also inspired by how his bright buildings had faded in the sun to dusky hues.
You can see these influences in our fabrics. Utopia derives from hard and textured surfaces like machined and cast concrete. Brushed aluminum is reinterpreted as the diagonal twill lines of Lake. High-tech fabrics used in sports and fashion influenced the perforations of Rocket, while Fiction is a more opaque knit.
To debut the collection, we’re staging an installation at the Kvadrat showroom during this month’s London Design Festival: a textile cityscape inspired by modernist béton brut columns. To ideate, we first sketched plans in pencil and colored pen, then did more detailed perspective drawings, all on graph paper. The installation will feature biomorphic pilotis, or pillars, of our textiles—alternating textured, smooth, and perforated for a play of light and darkness. Unlike upholstery fabrics, curtains are hung, so the scale is architectural. With ‘Pilotis,’ we want to capture that unusual relationship between scale and softness.”