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Saturday, Sep. 18, 2004 at 2:51 PM
Monsoon Heritage the very chic eco space designer. Trend setter’s favourite. New Collection launched in exclusivity in L.A and Goa.
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It all began on Christmas day in 1994. Two ancient cedars of Lebanon were dramatically blown over in the garden of the house of a friend in Provence. Looking at the venerable landmarks, Yahel Chirinian and Doris Zacheres knew they had to found an idea to preserve them. That visceral reaction to the fallen trees led the on a path that they continue to tread happily today. “attracted to the form, the grain, the smell, we began to work with natural elements, while preserving as much as possible the natural shape, size and texture.
Growing up in France and Italy Yahel Chirinian studied and worked as photographer before embarking her on her travels and her designer career. With Doris Zacheres they own Monsoon Heritage a small and dynamic designer studio settled in Goa. Artists designers and furniture makers internationally known for their massive pieces in recycled or discarded tropical wood mixed with frozen glass and petal flowers. They fashion a host of objects from a variety of natural elements.
The phrase “art imitates life” begins to take on new meaning when you are confronted with the creations of Monsoon Heritage and of its two designers Yahel Chirinian and Doris Zacheres. Whether in ebony, glass, ash, iroko, ginkgo, flowers, Bamboo or coconut pod, Monsoon Heritage creations exude a quiet appreciation of the hues, tones, paterns and textures of living nature. But their work does not end there. The basic, naturally inspired shape or pattern is used to build a more complex, if visually minimalist, piece that can then evolve, grow, or progress to a series of works. And through they are not afraid of dynamism or expression in their work, there is an overall sense of serenity, a peaceful flow of energy, contemporary, wild and sensual.
They met in Paris where they became inextricably bound to the pursuit of art in design. “We were quickly integrated into an artistic group of architects, designers, environmentalists”, the recall of this early days in the city, “we saw and learned and our creativity was awakened”.
Few years ago Yahel Chirinian and Doris Zacheres were asked to contribute to a research project in San Francisco on teaching children. They created two objects that were seen and touch by one group, and then described by that group to people who could not see the pieces. It was, they explain, “a way of making people more aware of the sense of touch..... of making them feel things with more sensitivity”. In this work they discovered “the language of touch”, which has inspired their fervently tactile approach ever since.
Then, they left East and settled with papers and drawing pens in India. They began experimenting with other culture : the Indian magi of colour. Theses were the precursors of their imaginary civilization, a study in the objects that constitute a culture –from utensil to ritual pieces, to samples of ancient writing. These they managed to imbue with the air of familiarity combined with mystery that makes ancient artefact so alluring. They were describe as being “neo-primitive and eco space visionaries” , something that pleased Yahel Chirinian and Doris Zacheres, as did the categorization of them as “dreamers and soul alchemists”. Both descriptions reflect their sensibility, not only to the natural world, but to human perceptions and impact upon it.
Natural colours Frosted glass massive wood rare organic elements create an overwhelming sense of warmth and neo visionary exclusive interior space. Sculptures lightings are remarkable for their organic intensity. Their designs schemes are a bold statement of both origins and determination to celebrate them in a place that speaks vividly and passionately of a faraway home.
It is a lifestyle of engaging the senses that interest Yahel Chirinian and Doris Zacheres the most. This precedes the experiments with touch, to a time when Yahel Chirinian worked in fashion for Cerruti and Chanel, and when Doris Zacheres first used organic textures for contemporary interiors. The elements of Monsoon Heritage’s work and living space that you touch, see and smell, are an enchanting, carefully blended piece.
In the hand of Yahel Chirinian and Doris Zacheres nature is mystifying, surprising, glamorous, anything but harsh. Monsoon Heritage is renowned for its large scale works. One piece Yahel and Doris created recently for a client in Malibu weighs over three tons, they have made other sculpture lightings from tree trunks measuring twenty feet in diameter. Their reverence for natural elements and their desire for people to share that feeling are made
“Yahel and Doris’s medium is the earth and it’s endless gifts” a friend and curator of their work once in L. A. commented. They are fascinated, they confess, by the “opportunities for surprise” that natural elements offer, as when cutting reveals hidden” unexpected qualities, faults or voids”. What their work achieves is the splendid opportunity for others to explore these qualities fist hand as they explore the solid forms. The idea is to apprehend the material in all its glory with as many senses as can be turned to it.
“We see ourselves as beings until death and so we seek to merge this day of reckoning with nature and space though empathy.” It is, Yahel Chirinian continue, “a way of being conscious of our existence, and a way of discovering moments of beauty”.
New collection launches this month. Extremely sophisticated, radical and exclusive.
Monsoon Heritage creations are present in Paris, Santa Monica and Goa. Monsoon Heritage collaborates with architects and interior decorators in United States, France, Spain, Italy, Lebanon and India - including luxury hotels, Spas and lounges projects.
For more info contact :
Chiara Borgese or Sarah Golan
Monsoon Heritage studio in Goa
Phone: 0091 832 2409800
Milan Jarvis is journalist at ID Design and UrbanO
Architecture, Design and New Trends specialist, including developers, architects, designers, contractors and engineers. Milan Jarvis lives and work in Los Angeles.
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