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Golescu Villa and the Honest Goods Collection, object design and craft in relation to architectural heritage

The project is part of the strategy Honest Goods Foundation Pro Patrimonio to conceive a sustainable heritage brands. Series objects Honest Goods reflect a practical project pioneering object design and craftsmanship which resulted versatile items of daily use which solves the needs of general validity - lighting, utensils, fabrics and accessories for cooking and dining - and sitting under sign architectural heritage and cultural landscape. The uniqueness of the collection is given by inspiration of designers, local craftsmen technical, creative and production process open-ended type The unique character of this collection is marked by the designers’ inspiration, the local craftsmen’ techniques and the creative and production process which has an open ending akin to research by design. .

The exploit started in 2016 with sources of inspiration gathered from Golescu Villa (heritage building in Câmpulung, Argeș county), the needs of the place and its surroundings by respecting customs, crafts and materials in the Muscel area starting from the notion of cultural landscape. We aimed to reuse a historical monument not through conservation and institutionalization, but through inhabitation and integration in daily life.

The multi-disciplinary team made up of architects, designers and students documented the craftsmen in the villages, searched for structural solutions for fittings and finishing starting from basic human needs. Within this “locomotive” project, we wish to respect the following principles that reveal our vision about design (without imposing a certain style): functionality in relation to local materials, contemporary usage, multi-functionality, versatility, (objects should enable usage indoors and outdoors, in a rural or urban setting, in the domestic and public space), objects must be compact, modular, ergonomic.

As part of the “locomotive” project we aim to abide by the following principles, which attest to our vision of design (without imposing any particular style): functionality in relation to material, contemporary practices of use, multi-functionality, versatility (objects can be used inside and outside, in the country and in the town, in the domestic and in the public space), and objects that should be compact, modular, ergonomic. The result is a collection of variable geometry that can produce experimental series. The process of realisation has shown that the craftsman/designer relationship is constructed with patience and reciprocal understanding. There are challenges on both sides: the designers construct their ideas setting out from local techniques and idiom, while the craftsmen adapts and even extend their craft in collaboration with the designers.

The idea and the objectives have been first tested internationally at the London Design Festival in September 2016 and nationally at the exhibitions in Galeria Posibilă, Bucharest (2016) and Golescu Villa in Câmpulung Muscel (2016).

Models rethought and rebuilt after the experiment phase initiated in 2016 have been exhibited at the Romanian Design Week (RDW) 2017 , at the Threads of Tradition exhibition, organized by RDW and Romanian Cultural Institute Madrid (Central de Diseño de Diseño, Centro Cultural Matadero, Madrid, 15 June-16 July 2017) and at the exhibition Forumul Tradițiilor Creative (Muzeul Țăranului Român, Bucharest, 5-10 September, 2017).

Designers: Andreea Machidon, Ruxi Sacaliș, Veronica Olariu

The Honest Goods catalogue can be found here.

The series of Honest Goods objects is available for purchase online on Pro Patrimonio’s website at Shop Honest Goods

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