Domenico Urraro, the interior designer with roots in Pompeii

Thirty-one years and ten years of work behind him, a talent between ingenious loci and modernity

“I was born in Pompeii and I feel connected to this place, it is part of my identity. Whenever I can, I go in search of inspiration for the city, observing the finds and ruins, where I find and recognize a perfection of style, shapes and colors that can be adapted to the pursuit of modern design. Tradition and culture, for me, are central because I work a lot on my territory, on the slopes of Mount Vesuvius “.

Domenico Urraro, 31, is an interior designer who has been active for almost ten years. Early talent, behind him, he has a cultural background rooted in traditions that never stop enriching, moving between different areas of the project without ever losing sight of his personal figure.

Domenico Urraro, photo by Carlo Oriente

What is your background?

“I have always been fascinated by the design world, starting with my diploma as a surveyor. Then I perfected my vision through studies of interior and product design at the Higher Institute of Design in Naples. I was so lucky to start designing apartments right from the start, thanks to the trust I have given myself from friends and acquaintances, and therefore to have the first construction site experiences even during my university career “.

Nineteenth-century building, attic

You started working very early. In 2015, as a 24-year-old, you started your own independent business.

“Yes, that year I was entrusted with the renovation of a building from the end of the nineteenth century that was very special for its ceiling: the perimeter wall had many ventilation holes, which I decided to preserve, after inspiration from the chapel of Notre Dame du Today in Ronchamp di Le Corbusier. That was my springboard “.

Restoration of the ceiling

How do you handle customer requests?

“The first approach to projects consists of perceptions and sensations. The observation of the place is of course the starting point. Then I try to establish a relationship with the customer based on knowledge of his world, of his habits. Then I begin to develop the creative process away from the desk, in moments of relaxation where the mind is freer to imagine. Mine is a continuous dialogue between past and present: I love looking at contemporary and international trends, but part of me is deeply attached to the great examples of the past. Aesthetically, I like to think of my way of understanding design as something asymmetrical, consisting of environments connected to each other, but always autonomous. I like playing with geometries, creating contrasting elements without losing a theme of sight that connects all spaces, preserves functionality and intended use. Like when I as a child imagined life in the ruins of Pompeii, I like to imagine the way people tomorrow will move in the environments I have designed for them, as they will create their home with it. “

Which projects best represent your way of working?

“I mainly deal with private and retail interventions. It is not always easy to find customers who give you carte blanche. Casa GM in 2019 is a happy affair. The young couple in question wanted a house with a contemporary and international feel. I tried to combine the right proportions between the environments and through specially designed furniture and combinations of materials and finishes, I created a style that had as its ultimate goal a dimension beyond styles and fashion ”.

In retail, however, the approach is always different from case to case.

“In Reve Store, from 2020 I fished some typical choices from the sixties and adapted them in a modern way. Through the choice of bright colors, reflective materials, gold chromium plating for the hangers and the placement of the mirrors that cover the large columns inside, I have a larger and more open space. The rest was done by the horizontal and vertical shelves in warm colors, which I decided to focus on for compositional rigor. In short, I tried to restore a young and welcoming environment “.

Where do you find most of your inspiration?

“In nature. For example, the Season Lab project was born in 2021 and thought of Faito, the mountain overlooking Castellammare di Stabia, the store town. I took out monolithic furniture, colored displays and – given the small size that existed available – I used strategic mirrors, which, located at the bottom, have expanded and changed the perception of space.It was also necessary to think about a targeted use of light, to which I resorted to local workers in an even deeper contact with the country where these projects originate from ”.

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