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After extensive reconstruction, the Slovak National Gallery in Bratislava (SNG) has recently reopened to the public. Konsepti participated in the project as the general contractor of furniture, supplying the gallery with premium furniture from nearly forty brands including Arper, Vitra, Unifor and Fermob.
'This is a unique project that has world-class architectural parameters. For Konsepti, it was a great honour and responsibility to be a part of such a project as a general supplier of furniture,' says Šimon Opekar, Head of Sales Konsepti CZ/SK.
Alexandra Kusá, the Director General of the National Gallery of Art, pointed out the reconstruction was crucial in terms of the gallery's overall aesthetics and design: 'Cultural institutions are spaces that cultivate society, and a beautiful environment is clearly part of that. They are also a place where the public can experience quality design for themselves, because not everyone is interested in it and not everyone can or wants to experience it in their home environment. It's an opportunity to learn to live and connect with nice things,' she explains.
We provided equipment for the gallery's outdoor courtyard, lobby, café and exhibition spaces. Additionally, we are also responsible for those parts of the premises that are not accessible to the public - for example, the offices in the administration part of the building or the library. In total, more than three thousand products from 37 different brands were used in the project. Those most strongly represented are Arper, Vitra, Fermob, Unifor, Atelier Vierkant, Zanotta and Knoll.
'In all cases, we are talking about brands that create timeless and quality products. This is also what attracted the interior designers – the thoughtful selection of products, their design and the chosen colour scheme pleasantly complemented the renovated gallery space,' says Katarína Hrbáňová, Sales Consultant for Konsepti Bratislava, who was responsible for the furniture delivery on the company's behalf.
'We worked with two main premises: the character of the space, which is a mix of baroque, 1970s and present-day, and the meaning and significance of the institution. We were therefore primarily looking for pieces that are 'weightless', but at the same time comfortable, off the floor, upholstered and not too bold, so as not to dominate the gallery,' explains Mária Michalič Kusá from the BKPŠ studio, in charge of the reconstruction project.
The leading Italian brands in particular have a strong presence in the interior. Among specific pieces of furniture, it is worth mentioning, for example, the Kiik benches by Arper, which were placed in the gallery's exhibition space.
'The only atypical request the architects had was for the Arper Kiik benches, where we had to match the colour of the bases with the windows and doors frames. Ultimately it is precisely this atypical colouring of the bases and the cognac-coloured leather seats that make the benches look particularly appealing in the exhibition space,' says Hrbáňová.
Visitors can also explore the library. Here, we installed simple aluminium shelving systems and tables from Unifor.
'In combination with the colourful Pix stools and Arper's Catifa chairs, the shelves create a unique study space that, together with the beautiful view of the outdoor courtyard, invites you to spend some quality time with the books,' Hrbáňová adds.
In the office part of the building, the architects worked with furniture by the Swiss brand Vitra. In the lounge area, they installed office chairs from the ID Mesh, Aluminium and Softshell Chair collections, as well as Eames Tables and Alcove sofas.
'What I personally like very much is how the pieces are finding their place, how my colleagues combine them and the scope of what the project allows us to do,' comments Alexandra Kusá, the SNG's Managing Director.
The Luxemburg collection by the French brand Fermob then helped to complete the outdoor areas of the gallery grounds. The incorporated products were chairs, armchairs, stools and tables in various colours. Thanks to these, the gallery courtyard has become a lively space inviting visitors to sit and relax.