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    Product story


    Drawing on their distinct fascination for nature and their intent on reimagining decorative arts, Milan-based multidisciplinary studio, Studiopepe has designed Muuto’s first piled rug. While it is a soft and deeply tactile piece, Relevo is marked by a strong sculptural character emblematic of the studio’s unmistakable way of bridging art and design.
    Helmed by Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara di Pinto, Studiopepe’s work often takes a conceptual and emotive approach to design. The duo is known for their way with composition and graphic form, embodied in their unexpected concepts and vivid storytelling. Their internationally acclaimed practice encompasses anything from architecture, industrial design and exhibitions to creative direction, installation and styling.
    These sides of their practice are distilled in Relevo, meaning relief in Latin. Hand-tufted in India, the rug is a refined piece with a great sense of identity and not least, texture. Its characteristic furrows are made by trimming the wool in different levels, creating a striking graphic pattern and a visual sense of depth.

    "When we approach a new project, we are not just thinking of the product itself. It is immensely important for us to think of where it will be — where it will live — and what kind of feeling it has," says Chiara of Studiopepe.

    "Since the rug is one of the most domestic objects we have in our house, on the floor, we wanted to create something that would suit many situations and settings. To not only be put in front of the sofa but equally in the bedroom, hallway or study, using two or more together to create a longer or larger surface", adds Arianna. 

    Bringing their rich material know-how and sensitivity for craftsmanship to the task, they make Relevo Rug a further exploration of tufting — it is their interpretation of what they dub a sort of ‘limitless’ technique. Choosing a matte quality made with 100% New Zealand wool, it is an example of how material supports design, making its pattern and shadowplay more pronounced.

    "Tufting is really interesting because it allows you to have a lot of possibilities in terms of design, from the actual shape to the expression in terms of length of the pile. Having so few limitations means you really unleash creativity", says Arianna.

    The design itself is inspired by their love of land art, a movement that emerged in the 60s and 70s. Artists expanded the boundaries of art to include materials such as water, rocks, soil, vegetation and landscape, creating installations and works that sometimes drew on nature’s ways, other times became part of it. They mention the work of Richard Long as one of the main references for Relevo, a land artist whose work frequently featured furrows and paths in the soil.

    "Early on, we focused our attention on the tension between pattern and tactility. We looked at aerial views of nature, observing patterns in nature. Perhaps contrastingly, we drew on another favorite artist of ours, Daniel Buren, whose incredibly graphic installation work we adore. So we tried to merge these two concepts - nature and art", says Chiara. 

    "Rather than work with a typical decoration, as you often find in a carpet, we thought it would be interesting to lean on this subtle way of producing a patter, creating a relief with different pile lengths gently referencing Long’s furrows and paths", says Arianna of Studiopepe

    As with most of their designs, Relevo is marked by an eclectic detail that plays with one’s perception of it — a compositional gesture that makes you look twice. While acknowledging that most living rooms and bedrooms often hold a particular set of elements and objects, they explain that they somehow wanted to work outside of the classic dimension. Their solution was to give the otherwise rectangular design a single rounded corner, following the visual language of the pattern. 

    "That corner, along with the option of four colors, allows one to play with different configurations - two carpets together that can create another shape. All to give the user more freedom in playing with different expressions."

    "It is nice when everything is not so… rectangular. You can place the rug not only in front of, but also on the side of or in diagonal to an object or space, and it still makes sense," — Arianna.


    In their opinion, interior design is all too often created for the eyes only. Studiopepe determinedly challenge this aspect of the industry, minding all senses with their projects. While we often think of tactility as something inherent to the hands, Arianna and Chiara rethink this concept with Relevo, addressing the equally important sense of touch in the feet and skin.

    "At home, we really love to walk barefoot, so we thought a lot about the sensation you have when you walk on the carpet," — Chiara. 

    "We imagined the feeling of walking barefoot in the grass or sand, aspiring to recreate that nice sensation of the feet in Relevo’s furrows. You can discover the piece through the body."


    Photos by Luca Caizzi – visit his Instagram account here to explore more of his universe as well as his website here.

    relevo rug

    Part of the MillerKnoll Collective