Objects of Desire

The Wick - François-Xavier Lalanne, Mouton de Laine, (designed c.1965, executed 2000)

Art Mouton de Laine, François-Xavier Lalanne (designed c.1965, executed 2000)

François-Xavier Lalanne’s iconic ‘moutons de laines’ lend a touch of spring all year around. His fluffy faux livestock were first created in the 1960s for the Parisian apartment he shared with his artist wife, Claude. They were subsequently displayed in the entrance to the Palais de Tokyo’s salon entrance hall, since which they have become recognised as the artist’s signature work.

Over the decades, Lalanne’s sheep sculptures have been variously commissioned by such eminent figures as Yves Saint Laurent co-founder Pierre Bergé, architect Peter Marino and garden designer Madison Cox. ‘Having a sheep in your living room, as opposed to an armchair or a wood bench, is just pure fun,’ Cox described. But their whimsical appeal costs dearly: in 2011, a group of ten sheep sold for just under $7.5 million at Christie’s.


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The Wick - Winter pot, Edmund de Waal

Objects Winter pot, Edmund de Waal

Minimal and monochrome, Edmund de Waal’s latest ceramics emit a meditative calm. Made during the lockdown of 2020, each one captures the silent introspection that characterised the maker’s experience of that period. De Waal was inspired by two Chinese bowls from the Song Dynasty in his studio, both of which had been mended using the Japanese art of Kintsugi – the art of marking loss and repair – reflected herein the use of lead, gold, and red pigment.

This work was exhibited recently as part of De Waal’s ‘some winter pots’ show at Gagosian Davies Street. Though only viewable through a window from the street, their tactility still resonated at a distance.


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The Wick - Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2012, Yayoi Kusama

Initiatives Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2012, Yayoi Kusama

Champagne bubbles, polka dot style. This new and exclusive Veuve Clicquot bottle brings together two ‘grand dames’ to create the art of good living: the pioneering Madame Clicquot – the first woman to run a champagne house – and the incomparable Japanese contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama, known world-over for her unique designs. This collaboration has its roots in 2006, when Kusama reimagined a traditional painting of Madame Clicquot. This limited-edition design unites their creative vision together once more for a bottle that sparkles with renewed effervescence. Didier Mariotti, the house’s Cellar Master has described it as ‘playful, lively, laughing’: we can already hear the sound of corks popping.


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The Wick - Still Birth (Red), Polly Morgan

Art Still Birth (Red), Polly Morgan

Art meets animal in the work of Polly Morgan, dubbed by Banksy as ‘Britain’s hottest bird stuffer’. Taking the genre of ‘still life’ to literal levels, the self-taught taxidermist aims to celebrate the beauty and poignancy of the natural world by displaying her subjects in unexpected ways: such as her now-iconic glass-domed bird. Though the work and its title feels dark in undertone, the creature’s graceful suspension by balloon brings a touch of life-affirming serenity.

These works were originally conceived as part of Polly’s 2010 exhibition ‘Still Life’, created exclusively for Other Criteria’s Hinde Street shop in London. Still Birth (Red) is an edition of 10 and available to purchase from Polly’s online shop of works.


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The Wick - Species II, Frederikson Stallard

Design Species II, Frederikson Stallard

An armchair as you’ve never seen it (or felt it) before. Jagged in form and plush in style, ‘Species II’ juxtaposes the rough with the sensual. Like a velvet-coated mass of rock, this Frederikson Stallard-designed item is an unexpectedly inviting elevation of the domestic, characteristic of the duo’s work. Made as part of the Species series, the piece was created specifically for Momentum, an exhibition by Frederikson Stallard held during the London Design Festival in 2015 – described by them as ‘a celebration of the experimental and the rigorous, the unique versus the mass produced’.

Species II is currently available with David Gill Gallery, a London-based gallery exhibiting art and design collections by cutting-edge contemporary artists.


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The Wick - Nebu Bracelet, Loren Nicole

Design Nebu Bracelet, Loren Nicole

Though a fast-up-and-coming brand, Loren Nicole carries a 10,000-year strong legacy of jewellery making. Founded by archaeologist-turned-designer Loren Teetelli in 2016, her house’s collection of ethically sourced gemstones and gold jewellery seeks to translate the spirit of ancient civilisations into modern and wearable pieces. Looking back to the bygone eras of Rome, Egypt and South American, the brand even replicates the traditional forms of jewellery-making. This bracelet, part of the Ancient Egypt-inspired Nebu Collection, is handmade from 22k yellow gold to depict the famous Horus Will Be King story from Egyptian mythology. They say there’s nothing new under the sun, but there’s a novelty to how Loren Nicole’s jewellery rediscovers the past.


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The Wick - Floral Embroidered Shawl Coat, Mira Mikati

Fashion Floral Embroidered Shawl Coat, Mira Mikati

It’s the era of joyful dressing: positive associations, bright prints and colours that spark happiness. This puts Mira Mikati right in the fashion spotlight. Since the launch of her eponymous brand five years ago, the fun and optimistic aesthetic of her designs have earned a cult following. A case in point is this floral embroidered coat, which brings more than a touch of summer to the cold season. Cheering up our outdoors look with an elegant shawl collar design, the coat has been beautifully crafted from a blend of virgin wool and cashmere. With long sleeves, belt loops, a belted waist and mid-length hem, this is a coat to define the season.


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The Wick - Cysaan, Helen Beard

Art Cyssan, Helen Beard

At a time of forbidden human contact, Helen Beard’s high-octane artworks of erotic tactility pack a greater punch. Flat in colour and rich in sensuality, her paintings are unapologetic in their celebration of female empowerment and sexual experience. Her highly distinctive style has resulted in sell-out shows at Reflex Amsterdam and Newport Street Gallery: Damien Hirst is one of her greatest champions. She often uses pornographic online material as inspiration, wanting to paint in ‘an exciting, fresh way that doesn’t involve shame or prudishness and opens up possibilities of talking about the subject without being shy.’ In its depiction of an androgynous couple kissing, Cyssan has become one of her cult hits.


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The Wick - Cocoon Lamp, Nacho Carbonell © The Carpenters Gallery

Design Combi Cocoon lamp, Nacho Carbonell

Ethereal and embracing the magic of nature, these lamps by Spanish designer Nacho Carbonell are reimagined as small tree-like structures. Held together by steel branches, they’re enveloped in steel meshes covered with a mix of sand and textile hardener – also Carbonell’s own creation. ‘I like to see objects as living organisms, imagining them coming alive and being able to surprise you with their behaviour,’ Carbonell says. ‘What I want to create are objects with a fictional or fantasy element, that allow you to escape everyday life’. Let these lamps light the way.

Carbonell’s Cocoon lamps are available at London’s Carpenters Workshop Gallery, a world-leading gallery in collectible design and functional art.


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