1000 ORCHIDS BRING COLOUR TO MILAN DESIGN WEEK

 
Every year the grand courtyard of Palazzo Francesco Turati in Milan is a sea of flowers. It’s a great tradition which the Milanese and visitors eagerly look forward to. Masterly The Dutch in Milano thereby combines design and floriculture during Salone del Mobile, the world’s biggest design trade fair for interior design. It’s the first time that orchids have adorned the courtyard.
 
We talked to Nicole Uniquole: international design curator, concept developer and exhibition maker. Nowadays Nicole is world-famous for her masterly exhibitions, in which she combines contemporary design with the works of Old Masters. Her professional practice has an inimitable way of interweaving different worlds.

Nicole Uniquole
Nicole creates high-profile exhibitions such as Dutch Design - House of Orange at Oranienbaum Palace, Royal Showpieces at Het Loo Palace and Masterly © - Dutch Pavilion at Salone del Mobile in Milan.


Picture by: Frieda Mellema
 
Could you tell us more about Masterly, where we are displaying the orchids?
Masterly presents a complete and varied field of design with relevant work from architects, furniture, textile, construction and accessories businesses, designers, artists, craftspeople, galleries and vocational colleges for design and interiors. The location is the historic Palazzo Francesco Turati, with a fabulous courtyard surrounded by arches and a roof terrace with a view of the Duomo. We have decorated this Palazzo with 1000 radiant orchids from the Netherlands.
 
In Milan, you are bringing together Dutch art and floriculture. How do you think the two are linked?
Both disciplines attach great importance to knowledge, skill and artisan craftsmanship. So they are inseparable.
 
This year you have opted for orchids. Why?
Lombardy and Milan suffered greatly at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. I would like to cheer up the inhabitants of Milan with a fabulous orchid as a comforting flower and as a metaphor for a long and happy life that makes you cheerful again. The elegant orchid is the perfect plant for this.


Picture by: Frieda Mellema
 
What is your personal relationship with flowers and plants, and specifically the orchid? Do you have a favourite orchid?
I don’t personally have green fingers, but the modern, elegant decorative orchid requires little care and lasts a long time. I love true nature, and have no interest in fake flowers. I also prefer orchids that flower several times a year.
 
As a lover of art and design, you’re bound to have a few tips on combining plants and art in an interior. Could you tell us something about that or offer any advice?
Flower painters have long been a source of inspiration.
The concept of Masterly The Hague presents art and design whereby the designer has been inspired by a historic painting. I could easily imagine designers creating a work based on one of the 25,000 different orchids, and then displaying them together in your own home. A jewel with a story for your interior.


Picture by: Frieda Mellema
 
International Day of the Orchid
Usually the flowers are distributed to the inhabitants of Milan on the final day as a ‘thank you’ for their hospitality and the great relationship. Thursday 9 September is the International Day of the Orchid.