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Cyperus papyrus inspired the columns of the ancients. This season it is our muse once more

Majestic
Cyperus
papyrus

This season we celebrate the wondrous marsh-dwelling plant of ancient Egypt, once worshipped by pharaohs: our beloved Cyperus papyrus. This majestic plant, with its full and elegant silhouette, is ready for a long-overdue comeback_______.

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The fragile-seeming Cyperus papyrus is surprisingly strong and powerful

The fragile-seeming Cyperus papyrus is surprisingly strong and powerful

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Art Direction
Daphne Westland @studioenter

Spatial Design
Paolo Faleschini @pfvisual

Photography
Carlfried Verwaayen @carlfriedverwaayenphotography
Myriam Balaÿ @myriambalay (GIF)

Styling
Judith Rasenberg @judithrasenberg

Plants
Neervenplant

Our souls are striving for nourishment, looking for a wash of optimism, searching for an uplifting environment that will illuminate cold months and bring enlightenment to daily life. The solution is a floraissance of new objects and ideas. After the clamour and cacophony of last season's golden tones, we're enjoying the new fusion of maximalism with minimalism. It's expressed in a concoction of elegance, pastels, sheer substances and plants dancing in the light. Winter finds a warm home in soft materials - velvet - and subtle textures - fur and mohair - combined with a diverse palette of muted tones: tan, light green and natural wool whites that glow like snow in the sun. In this ethereal landscape, the Cyperus papyrus fits in perfectly. Her delicate-looking stems, topped with a decorative umbrella of leaves, love to play hide-and-seek in the soft daylight.

Ornamental features

Her characteristic triangular shape helps - unexpectedly, given its apparent fragility - to give this plant the strength to withstand high, strong winds without breaking. All together, it is a sumptuous visual experience. One look at the elegantly shaped umbrellalike leaves is calming to mind, body and soul, creating an sensation of instant peace. In ancient times, the ornamental features were revered by Greek and Roman artists and architects. Taking the plant as their muse, she contributed significantly to their innovations in design. Her beloved shape inspired artists working on decorative patterns, contributing to motifs for jewellery, wall paintings and fabrics. Architects, creating temple columns, shaped them like papyrus stems topped with flowering heads, while in Egypt whole bunches of flowering papyrus bound together conspired to influence the beautiful columns of the ancients. This season, her inspiring shapes are back in fashion once more.

plant Trendstory
plant Trendstory
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Its fragile-looking stems, grouped together playfully, radiate warmth, togetherness and feminine power

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Its fragile-looking stems, grouped together playfully, radiate warmth, togetherness and feminine power

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Interior inspiration

This season, there's a playful approach to traditional ornament. Take the lead from creators in the fashion, art and design worlds, all busy exploring new ways to reinvent the classics. For SS20 Miu Miu models walked down a runway studded with immense columns of waste wood, all with the opulent appearance of carved marble. Elsewhere, widely-admired illustrator Charlotte Taylor frequently uses arches and columns in her soft architectural dreamscapes, HKliving is bringing column-shaped vases onto the market, and a glance at the Instagram feed of Gucci Creative Director @alessandro_michele reveals that he too enjoys all things ancient Greek and Roman. We're sure neoclassicism will be proudly displayed on his 2020 mantelpiece. With arches and columns returning to the interior – as eager design studios make trending digital renders and 3D interior collages - we’re rushing off to reinterpret the classics in a whole new contemporary way.

IN ANCIENT HISTORY THE ORNAMENTAL FEATURES OF BEAUTIFUL CYPERUS PAPYRUS WERE REVERED BY GREEK AND ROMAN ARTISTS FOR HER BELOVED CHARACTERISTIC SHAPE_______.

One look at the elegantly shaped umbrellalike leaves is calming to mind, body and soul, creating an sensation of instant peace

One look at the elegantly shaped umbrellalike leaves is calming to mind, body and soul, creating an sensation of instant peace

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Interior inspiration

This season, there's a playful approach to traditional ornament. Take the lead from creators in the fashion, art and design worlds, all busy exploring new ways to reinvent the classics. For SS20 Miu Miu models walked down a runway studded with immense columns of waste wood, all with the opulent appearance of carved marble. Elsewhere, widely-admired illustrator Charlotte Taylor frequently uses arches and columns in her soft architectural dreamscapes, HKliving is bringing column-shaped vases onto the market, and a glance at the Instagram feed of Gucci Creative Director @alessandro_michele reveals that he too enjoys all things ancient Greek and Roman. We're sure neoclassicism will be proudly displayed on his 2020 mantelpiece. With arches and columns returning to the interior – as eager design studios make trending digital renders and 3D interior collages - we’re rushing off to reinterpret the classics in a whole new contemporary way.

TAKE A PLAYFUL APPROACH TO ORNAMENT THIS SEASON. LEADING CREATIVES EXPLORE CLASSIC GREENERY IN EXCITING NEW WAYS.

Waving umbrella heads

Papyrus inspired the columns of the ancients, from Egypt to Greece and Rome. This season, it is our muse once more. Although originally found in swamps, this beautiful plant will thrive in a stand-alone living room pot. In the right circumstances, the magnificent green stems and leaves can grow until between four and five metres high. Its fragile-looking stems, grouped together playfully, radiate warmth, togetherness and feminine power. Keep her roots damp, bathe her in bright sunlight, and she will reward you with an explosion of enchanting flowers so delicate and exquisite that it's no wonder the ancient Greeks chose them for their flower garlands, created as a sign of gratitude to their gods.

Natural benefactor

This is a truly remarkable plant. Although she doesn’t look it, the fragile Cyperus papyrus is incredibly strong. Five thousand years ago, the ancient Egyptians used this plant to make boats, sandals, clothing and, famously, the first examples of paper. Parts of the plant were also used as food and medicine. Nowadays, papyrus is also celebrated for another hidden quality: its success as a purifying agent. A 1997 study showed that the plant successfully reduced the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus in wastewater by over fifty percent in just over six months. The superheroine catches pollutants and purifies water with her immense, widespread root network. In our world of climate uncertainty, this is exactly the kind of saviour we need, and it's yet another reason to pay tribute to the marvellous plant in your living spaces. Cyperus papyrus has proven to be not only an inspiring muse for the arts but also indispensable for a cleaner, safer world_______.

Text
Rosanne Loffeld

TAKE A PLAYFUL APPROACH TO ORNAMENT THIS SEASON. LEADING CREATIVES EXPLORE CLASSIC GREENERY IN EXCITING NEW WAYS.
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Cyperus papyrus is a muse for the creative arts and indispensable aide in the search for a cleaner world

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Hanging lamps: Formafantasma, Sinclair Royal Magnolia chair: Fest Amsterdam, Maze stool: The Frozen Fountain, Stone bowl: Zara Home

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Purple chubby chairs, Pressed ceramic Rocket vase & Pressed ceramic vase Large: all The Frozen Fountain, Plateau coffe table: Fest Amsterdam

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Mezcla table: Bolt pink table lamp, Dongling Mirrors: all The Frozen Fountain