Graphic Design: Wallpaper and design in a new light by Carnovsky

I saw the amazing RGB wallpapers designed by design studio Carnovsky once again when the Creative review wrote about their show in Berlin last year. I had previously seen the design studio Carnovsky in Vogue, Wrap, Etapes and Indie Rocks magazine, among a few. And now they are part of the Fabergè Big Egg Hunt in London. I love what they do with the RGB prints “RGB – Le metamorfosi” so it’s very exciting to follow the evolution of the Italian design studio and what they´re up to next.
Text: Annkathrin Lundqvist Photos: Luca Volpe
Carnovsky is a design studio in Milan, consisting of the designduo Silvia Quintanilla and Francesca Rugi. Their graphic prints are both art and a little bit of magic. The graphic prints emerge depending on the color of light Red, Green or Blue. The  graphic patterns, printed in layers, manifests in different light and create new visual experiences depending on the use of Red, Green or Blue light, RGB. RGB is a work about the exploration of the “surface’s deepness”. Great innovative design, I think! I`m sure that we have only seen the beginning of a whole new experience. I wonder of course what has inspired the creative design duo? There are many questions, so I decided to ask Silvia and Francesca directly.

What did inspired you to start working with RGB lights and graphic design, prints?

Lets say that printing techniques and light have always been two subjects that we really care about, so it all began doing some experiments with them, … we have seen how an image changes if printed in red and green and then looked trough a red filter, it is an ancient “trick” used many times, but we asked ourselves what could happen with other colors, how do they work? So we began experimenting and it was really exciting.

Basically the idea behind RGB is that there are many different levels of meanings in the things. What you see for the first time may hide other meanings, other worlds. And what is supposed to be flat maybe is not. This is what we call the “surface deepness”: the idea of “change”, the idea of mutation of the things rather than the stability, the indefiniteness rather than certainty. With RGB we try to do something ephemeral, which continuously mutate.

What are you working with right now?

For us RGB is a really wide project that goes beyond wallpaper and we are exploring it both in terms of applications and in terms of new subjects. We have done some limited edition prints and also a deck of cards, and in this moment we are working in some textiles, furniture and also other objects.

What inspired you with the RGB Human and animal prints?

We wanted to represent the antique theme of the metamorphosis intended as an unceasing transformation of shapes from a “primigenial chaos” and we have always been fascinated with antique scientific illustrations, with all these ancient images that have at the same time a realistic and fantastic look.  They seem to have their own personality and thoughts so for us is like making them act as characters in an immense narration. All the images are taken from their original sources, actually reproductions of original engravings. The point for us was not to redesign these images but to use exactly these, bringing them to a new life, off course, with a different purpose from what they originally were made for.

2012 Carnovsky was awarded with “Wallpaper* Design Award” in the category “Best wallpaper”

RGB Wallpaper bt Carnovsky in Red light. Photographer Luca Volpe

RGB Wallpaper by Carnovsky in green light Photographer Luca Volpe

RGB Wallpaper by Carnovsky in blue light Photographer Luca Volpe

Carnovsky cards from the Carnovsky’s exhibition at Direktorenhaus, Berlin.

Carnovsky’s exhibition at Direktorenhaus, Berlin.

RGB designs create surfaces that mutate and interact with different chromatic stimulus.

Short facts: RGB consists in the overlapping of three different patterns that results in unexpected and disorienting images. The colors mix up, the lines and shapes entwine becoming oneiric and not completely clear. Through a filter (a colored light or transparent material) it is possible to see clearly the layers in which the image is composed. Each one of the red, green and blue filters serve to reveal just one of the three patterns, hiding the other two.

More Carnovsky.

Enjoy! /a

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