Recently I have been working with brilliant design studio Graphic Thought Facility on a wallpaper for Pizza Express, as part of a project looking at a new approach in the interiors and graphic design of Pizza Express, which was being led by interior architect Ab Rogers.
The basic black and white stripe synonymous with pizza express was the basic starting point for the wallpaper design, as well as an abstract landscape pattern I had previously designed. A reference point in terms of overall atmosphere, was the hotel of Gio Ponti’s Parco die Principi in Sorrento, a feat in modernism; the attention to detail, and the functionality of his design is brilliant.
I was asked to explore creating a pattern that would develop a sense of an italian landscape, but the main emphasis was to be on forms and composition rather than figuration.
During the initial research stages, I looked a lot at the tuscan town of San Gimignano, which aside from being the birthplace of my grandma Luigia, is a incredible hilltop town with numerous towers punching the skies, a steep hill climbs to reach a square in its centre, and in every direction a pleasing jumble of architectural beauty. The challenge was breaking down the architecture I was seeing into the simplest forms I could, and trying to retain a balance of everything that was in mind. Trying to see the negative space as being of equal importance to the forms.
A site specific variation design can now be found at Pizza Express Fulham (see photos above), and then shortly the complete wallpaper design at new branch Brent Cross (I will post up soon), with possible other locations to follow.
It has been a wonderful project to work on, many thanks to Mike and Andy at GTF.
workbook with reference of San Gimignano:
One of the initial original drawings i made for the design:
The final composition of one of the panels of wallpaper:
Details from the design: