16 Dec Interview :: Matteo Bianchi Studio
Early afternoon on a beautiful sunny day in November, between a site visit and a client call – we virtually meet Peckham-based interior designer Matteo Bianchi.
About 15 years in the industry with a rather peculiar way to enter the market, Matteo was born in the marketing and advertising world. At some point in his career he decided to follow his passion and curiosity towards product design and interiors and undertook a Masters in Interior Design in Chelsea. He now owns a studio in south London where he brainstorms – along with his team – on new residential, hospitality schemes and funky new and exciting products.
Do you think your role – as an interior designer – has changed during these unprecedented times? Are new skills required?
The role of interior designer is almost like psychotherapy. Before listening was very important – now it is even more! Everybody is a bit uncertain, distressed about the whole situation so you really have to understand what is lying behind their narrative. Another important part is to filter and guide to build up the house of their dreams by choosing the right quality materials, the right design. It is about coordinating pleasure and style with the technical side of things. I think we are becoming more art directors rather than interior directors in order to guide and translate a bit more into their homes
He explains that he is experiencing two trends at the moment: “On one hand there is decluttering activity in order to achieve calmness and balance and on the other one – as life is too short – everybody is going bananas! He explains his role as an interior designer and gives us an interesting example: “ We have been working with a couple lately. They were very frustrated about the lockdown and the limitations they were living. So we decided to recreate their favorite restaurant into their home. So the will to change is driving our mind into something new” .
Matteo has been recently involved in different projects between high- end residential and hospitality across the whole UK. As we can imagine each project has its own story and level of complexity to deal with. “ The Chelsea Spa project is surely one to be mentioned” – he says – “Highly challenging. The concept was amazing. From a technical point of view it was a journey, There were lots of things to consider from the staircase to the plumbing system“
You have been collaborating with other companies – how did it start? What have you enjoyed the most?
First of all I have learned about being skeptical about the choice because I tend to be naive and I should filter more. The service and quality are fundamental to assist a trusted partner. To build up a relationship with my supplier takes a bit to know each other. But when we do – we absolutely trust each other. My grandpa used to say that to fully understand a person you need to know where they were born and where they grew up. I think knowing who you are dealing with is vital and I like to meet the owner of the company, the workshop and so I can then fully trust them.
To our surprise, before our interview we discovered that he is also an author. Few years ago he wrote a book about design called Listen Design Inspire. With a smile on his face remembering his adventure, Matteo tells us: “ Oh well I wouldn’t believe myself what has happened over the last 15 years! The purpose was to share with people what I have learned and how my journey was. It was an amazing experience to let go of all the things that have happened. And also it was a bit of a challenge to myself but at the end you don’t need to know how to do it but simply what to do.”
Thank you Matteo for chatting with us! We are looking forward to seeing your next projects.