Hotel The Mitsui Kyoto to open November 2020 and other news from André Fu
“My work is about crafting compelling settings that embrace and reflect harmony, beauty and warmth, and which are imbued with refined, understated sophistication.” Andre Fu
For André Fu, the Hong Kong-based architect and founder of AFSO, this year has been one of dramatic changes to his intended schedule. His plans included the publication of a new hardback book, Crossing Cultures with Design, an exploration of 18 of his key projects and an insight into his evolving design philosophy. His lifestyle brand Andre Fu Living was due to unveil a major installation at Palazzo Visconti in Milan but with the cancellation of Salone, the collection, entitled Mid Century Rhythm, was launched through videography alongside digital platforms instead including 1st Dibs. In June, the Perrotin gallery in Hong Kong moved to a new harbourfront location in K11 ATELIER Victoria Dockside with interiors designed by AFSO. On the hospitality front, Andre is currently working on the design of a brand new hotel, Hotel The Mitsui, nestled in the heart of Kyoto with a vision to ‘celebrate Japanese beauty, combining contemporary style with traditional Japanese heritage.
Andre Fu Living’s 2020 collection marks a bold break from the previous collection; the latest venture pushes the boundary between fluidity and linear structure. Taking inspiration from the silhouettes of Hans Coper ceramics, impressions from Alexandre Noll’s sculptures and a nod to Mid-Century profiles, the new assembly reflects the cultural cross over between Asian design and Western aesthetics that characterises so much of Andre’s work. The collection includes lighting, ceramics, bronze vases, porcelain and furniture from a covetable chaise longue to a geometric mirror. This collection shows Andre’s fascination with artisanship, perfectly attuned to today’s challenging times, and marks a new progression for him.
Mid-Century Rhythm is available from 1stDibs, Milk, Design Anthology’s E shop, www.lanecrawford.com and Moda Operandi.
PERROTIN GALLERY, HONG KONG
June saw the relocation of the Perrotin Hong Kong gallery to K11 ATELIER Victoria Dockside. André has collaborated with Perrotin for over ten years, and he created the Interiors of the new Hong Kong gallery. Along with his studio AFSO, Fu was also responsible for the interiors of the Perrotin Shanghai and, the Perrotin Tokyo as well as the former Perrotin Hong Kong, the gallery’s first outpost in Asia and one of the first foreign-founded galleries established in Hong Kong. In each of these four galleries, Fu’s motivation was to reflect and relate to each different location and its geographical context.
The new gallery is located on the on the eighth floor of a prominent waterfront edifice housing K11 ATELIER and Rosewood Hotel and Residences Hong Kong. The concept of the gallery was heavily inspired by the unique spatial quality of the premises. With its prominent views of the city’s iconic harbour and expansive floor to ceiling windows, this is a highly welcoming and intimate art space that aims to provoke personal interaction with the artworks.
HOTEL THE MITSUI, KYOTO
In November, the newest addition to Kyoto’s hotel scene will open its doors. Hotel The Mitsui Kyoto has been developed by an award-winning team of specialist masters in their own fields with Andre designing the guest rooms and public areas, as well as working closely with Japanese craftspeople and artists, from landscape designers to ceramic sculptors, to create installations and artworks for the hotel. Built on the site of the original residence of the Mitsui family, Hotel The Mitsui will celebrate Japanese beauty in all its forms. As the only non-Japanese designer working on the hotel, Andre is especially conscious of the need for authenticity:
“I always feel a great sense of responsibility when taking on a new project, but it was especially so with the Hotel The Mitsui Kyoto, located as it is right in front of Nijo Castle in central Kyoto. Nijo Castle is not just a very important UNESCO World Heritage site; it was the Mitsui Kitake2 family residence for over 250 years from the end of the 17th century. I have spent a lot of time in Kyoto, but as a non-Japanese, I felt a special duty to reflect the poetic character of the ancient capital and pay homage to the family in an authentic way. At the same time as celebrating its unprecedented sense of place and capturing a contemporary sense of luxury, I hope to bring a fresh, international perspective that would add something unexpected.”