Meet Vaspaar: the Italian design gallery inspiring a new generation of collectors
Maria Cristina Didero chats with Kaisha Davierwalla and Andrea Grecucci of Italian collectible design platform Vaspaar, as they prepare to launch a new series of objects
Collecting is a curious process: you search for loved and attractive objects, you find them, you acquire them, and then finally, you find a space to store and display them. Slowly, you begin a collection of enchanting memories and stimulating conversations. In his book, Ways to keep, Hans Ulrich Obrist says that creating a collection “is also, inevitably, a way of thinking about the world – the connections and principles that produce a collection contain assumptions, juxtapositions, discoveries, experimental possibilities and associations. The creation of collections, one might say, is a method of producing knowledge.
This is the spirit that guides Vaspaar, an online destination founded by two passionate designers and collectors, Indian Kaisha Davierwalla and Italian Andrea Grecucci. Together in life and in business for several years, the couple surfs the world of design with lightness and precise professionalism, and a new approach to the world of collecting. “We met over 12 years ago at university in Milan,” explains Davierwalla. “I was at a bar nearby and I remember not feeling very well. Like a true gentleman, Andrea came to my rescue; we had never been officially introduced before. We talked and we haven’t stopped since.
“Genesi” coffee table, by Andrea Grecucci for Vaspaar, shown alongside an original “Superonda” seating system by Archizoom Associati for Poltronova, 1966, and a 1940s parchment and walnut sideboard with wooden legs brass. In the background, a rare “Vogue” floor lamp by Angelo Lelli for Arredoluce
For the duo, collecting is an art that requires a lot of care and rigorous research. ‘Vaspaar’ translates from Old Persian as ‘the purveyor of all things’, and the platform takes an inspirational approach to encouraging a new way of collecting, inspired by the past and looking to the future. “We found a way to merge the variety of expertise we had accumulated and decided to put our assets together and embark on this Vaspaar journey; it has always been a joint effort,” says Davierwalla.
While its founders have a deep appreciation for mid-century and contemporary Italian design and masters such as Gaetano Pesce, Ugo La Pietra, Gio Ponti, Franco Albini, Alessandro Mendini and Superstudio, Vaspaar also represents and embodies a contemporary approach to collecting and design. Born in 2016 as a digital platform, at a time when galleries in the metaverse and virtual space did not yet exist, it made the experience of design collecting accessible and fascinating to a younger audience in the Generation Y and Generation Z.
Vases from the ‘Proiezione’ series, by Andrea Grecucci for Vaspaar
Vaspaar intends to educate and guide new generations of collectors in purchasing valuable and thought-provoking pieces. “As a child, I was always in love with antiques that my father would bring home and show us, and then we would have wonderful discussions,” says Davierwalla. “Furthermore, we Zoroastrian Parsees in India have always had a reputation of being very careful and respectful with our possessions and we are also very good collectors of antiquities. I think I secretly wanted to look like my ancestors,” she adds.
United by a passion for historical design and collectibles, Davierwalla and Grecucci wanted, through Vaspaar, to offer all kinds of services, from bespoke curatorial advice to research and authentication. They also recently decided to create a collection of limited edition contemporary objects.
‘Neocene’ Vases, by Andrea Grecucci for Vaspaar
Designed by Grecucci, the pieces emphasize craftsmanship that is increasingly forgotten. Partnering with the Italian group Materie Prime, he designed a coffee table in sparkling and porous aluminium, three vases in sculpted Tuscan alabaster and three vases in cool-to-the-touch stainless steel. The use of different materials is important: “What I like the most is going deeper and questioning processes and approaches. Alabaster, for example, which is both strong and fragile, has been used in the past by maestros such as Angelo Mangiarotti and Ugo La Pietra”, comments Grecucci.
Accessible and informal, Vaspaar’s design collections open up possibilities and conversations, allowing visitors to the platform to discover the duo’s universe. They only have one suggestion for budding young collectors: “Do some research! §