Set in exotic gardens, filled with African artwork and layered with bold colours, Patrizia Moroso’s home in Udine, north-east Italy, is a reflection of her warmth and creativity. A collaborative project with Spanish architect and designer Patricia Urquiola and Italian architect Martino Berghinz, this dramatic dark box is home to the Moroso creative director, her artist husband, Abdou Salam Gaye, and their three children. ‘Patricia is fantastic,’ enthuses Patrizia. ‘She captured my emotions perfectly. She understood my visions and dreams and used them to create something beautiful.’ Here Patrizia talks us through the design process and the result.
Tell us how the project came about... I had been looking around for the right house for a long time when a friend told me about a plot of land in Udine that contained an incredible abandoned garden. I went to see it and discovered a little paradise in the middle of the city, so I decided to build my home there.
What inspired the design? Patricia and I had travelled together a lot for work, and we particularly loved the modern indoor/outdoor houses that we saw in Australia. We wanted to replicate that sense of openness and create a house where it would be possible to appreciate the beauty of the garden from the inside.
Did you have any specific requests? I wanted my home to incorporate a lot of glass and to face west, towards the evening sun. I was keen to use wood in the construction and to work with strong but natural colours. The dark grey stain on the exterior of the house was colour-matched to a black beech leaf from the garden, and the red frame is based on plant dyes used by Amazonian tribes.
How would you describe the interior? Its rooms have a sense of order, but the interior itself feels warm and informal. Much of the design and the palette are inspired by my husband’s family home in Senegal, and the furniture is a mix of Moroso prototypes, one-off pieces and items that are no longer in production.
Do you have a favourite space in the house? My bedroom. It’s at the corner of the house and has a huge window that offers a spectacular view. When I’m up there, I feel like a bird; all you can see is treetops and sky.
Finally, what do you like most about your home? The relationship we’ve created between the house and the outdoors is fantastic. The garden is filled with exotic trees from abroad, and when you look out it’s as though you’re in the middle of a jungle. I also love the simplicity of the architecture: it’s a perfect box that’s filled with beautiful, complex things. moroso.it; patriciaurquiola.com
WHY WE LOVE IT...
Masterminded by two design greats, the idiosyncratic Italian home of Patrizia Moroso – which was featured in ELLE Decoration’s October 2011 issue – manages to be both unique and unequivocally inviting. No high design or alienating architecture here – just striking, textural spaces executed with richness, warmth and empathy.