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Papini & Graunbøl interprets LINUM; 2

They’re the stylish duo who always get it right. Photographer Andrea Papini and stylist Marie Graunbøl always manage to create the perfect balance between textiles and objects, where beautiful, soft light meets the objects with the highest precision. This time it’s Marie’s own kitchen that’s in the spotlight and, together with Andrea, she shows how everyday things can blend together (or create a bright contrast) to the natural softness of the fabrics.

Spring means everyday dinners, but also weekend parties. A window facing a leafy courtyard can finally be opened and the sound from city or shore can finally enter our homes. That sets the scene for the kitchen becoming a natural gathering place and the table making a real statement. It’s a privilege to sit at a carefully set table, and to linger in silent reflection at the counter. That the kitchen is central to our lives is a given, so it seems quite natural for our interview with Marie and Andrea to be taking place in relation to it.

You’ve worked together several times now. How did you meet each other?

The industry in Scandinavia is quite small, so it’s easy to keep an eye on each other and identify who you would like to start a kind of creative relationship with.You naturally hope that your professional paths will cross one day, to give you the chance to see what could come of it. The fact that Andrea has two different cultural addresses to fall back on in her work adds a special touch to our collaboration and exchanges. Despite his Italian roots, he’s often astonishingly “Swedish” in his expression, but then, all of a sudden, a wind from the Mediterranean blows through his work and creates an unpredictability that I like very, very much.

This is your second interpretation for LINUM. What is it you find so enjoyable?

We’re given complete freedom, and the textiles do the work. They decide what the outcome will be and we find it challenging dealing with them in a legitimate way. This session actually became a little more “earthy” than what I had first envisaged, but it fits in well with the times. Right now we need tactile and lively, but also close and safe. Andrea’s skill with lighting contributes to the images’ undeniable calm and authenticity, and a slightly dark mood, which gives a bit of a grounded atmosphere.

How do you create the images? Do you create sketches together beforehand or is it more spontaneous?

I usually work in such a way that everything in terms of styling is planned for the photography. For me, the magic happens when there are carefully selected objects for each image, all angles are calculated and when the textiles are completely ready to use. That’s the point at which the collaboration with the photographer begins and it becomes decisive for the final result. Based on my experience, this is way to bring the best out of an image. Sketching too much beforehand and controlling too much can often hamper creativity during the actual shoot, so I’d rather go for good preparation and strong idea work beforehand. However, it differs a bit from assignment to assignment and in relation to the breadth and scope, but this is how I generally prefer working before a photo shoot.

What else will you be getting involved this spring?

I’m almost buried in exciting projects. I’ll work with lots of wonderful people who I really like and who also bring out the best in me. I’m really quite lucky.

Do you have a dream project that you’d like to realise?

For my part, I can really imagine creating an entire catalogue together with Andrea – a single, long and coherent story where the pictures are connected from beginning to end. It would also be fun to do something more conceptual and artistic, or why not travel to Italy and do something interesting there? The possibilities are endless.

Photographer: Andrea Papini, Stylist: Marie Graunbøl.