Image by Copperleaf Studio
Pushing the boundaries with his exploration of space and form, Tuami Zulu’s interest lies in the relationship between people and spaces, line and form. His highly sculptural bench, inspired by the form of a dancer in flight, earned him an award from Germany’s Parkett Dietrich International Benchmark competition and his mentorship with Studio A at last year’s show resulted in a stand that visitors talk about to this day.
We chat to Tuami Zulu of Proportion Studio of Design about his CoLab feature at the show.
1. What are you most looking forward to at this year’s show?
I cannot wait to unveil my CoLab feature at the show but also to see what my fellow designers will be doing for their room sets. Besides all the global design on offer, I am also excited to see what our local creatives are bringing to the SPA ZAR and SA Furniture Collective features… I believe some great new designs and interesting collaborations are on the cards. Also anticipating some magic between chef Wandile Mabaso and designer Donald Nxumalo for the show’s pop-up restaurant called les créatifs.
2. What would you say you are known for?
Sophisticated, dark and forward thinking designs concepts.
3. Describe your CoLab feature in one sentence?
Show me your darkness… presented in an indoor/outdoor lounge, bar and home gym.
4. Why have you opted for this theme/concept?
This idea stems from a quote by R. Queen “Light is easy to love. Show me your darkness”. This theme has something that I believe will draw people in. The theme encourages you as a visitor to be consumed by desire, and this will be reflected in how people engage with the space.
5. Can you further elaborate on what you plan to create?
Our focus this year is to engage with our guests into every detail of the space we’re creating and exploring how this space makes them feel. We’re working with some really great brands including Technogym, Tynox Stone, Professional Shopfitters, Hendrick’s Gin, Fabric Bank, Persian House International, True Design, La Grange Interiors and artist Stephen Graham.
My feature will express the relationship between light and dark. This visual focus has a long history that I find fascinating and I believe the overall look, and the experience we’ll create, will convey a sense of mystery and passion. Light and texture will play a vital role and I think social engagement will complete the experience.
Without revealing too much, the ideal set up for us to express this concept is an indoor/outdoor entertainment bar area. I believe this space, or rather situation, encourages everyone’s quest to relax and take pleasure in a proportional dose of luxury and satisfaction.
6. Please single out one feature/aspect of your CoLab that you think would make heads turn?
It would be difficult to single out one feature. Every aspect and small detail makes the whole CoLab a feature. Every single piece of the space is important, like Sandford L. Weill says, “Details create the big picture”.
7. How and/or why does what you are creating fit in with current trends and style movements?
‘Dark’ is the new trend, as one of the co-creators of the new trend “Darkside of Luxury in 2018”, I think this movement is slowly growing into people’s taste.
8. What would your dream project be?
The Ultimate Luxury hotel, with a great load of historical content and breathtaking views.
9. What are you hoping to get out of being a part of Design Joburg, featuring Rooms on View?
Being part of Design Joburg for the second time, I am looking at building on my relationships from last year and making new ones. My studio values social engagement and such experiences will be demonstrated at our “Show me your Darkness” CoLab. We’re hoping to achieve long-term relationships with clients that believe in our bid to create timeless spaces.
Ready to inspire visitors Design Joburg will once again transform the Sandton Convention Centre into the nucleus of decor and design on the African continent.