India Mahdavi grew up wanting to be a filmmaker to tell stories, finding comfort in an imaginary world. Strangely enough, she started studying architecture to do just that. When opening her own business in 1999, she quickly understood she could tell stories through design, with each new project. Born of Persian and Egyptian parents and named after the country in which she was conceived, during her parent’s honeymoon, she’s lived in places like Iran, Cambridge Massachusetts, New York, and Germany, before setting her heart on Paris, where she resides and has her atelier today.
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In collaboration with Thierry Costes, India Mahdavi reveals her first public project in Paris. The Germain opened its doors to the public in May of 2009 – it revives the Parisian bistro creatively and recreationally with a pixelated floor, composed of black and white cement tiles, and a graphically illuminated ceiling. Anis green and orange tones float around Sophie, a 5-meter yellow metal statue by Xavier Veilhan. ‘i wanted this place to have a history and a tradition but also to be able to free itself from it. I deconstructed the space by experimenting with scale, proportions and patterns.’ affirms India Mahdavi.
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This project, which united India Mahdavi and Joseph Dirand under the Oetker collection (the bristol, the cap Eden roc, or even the chateau saint-martin & spa) redefined the codes of a five-star mountain hotel. The 53 rooms, suites, private chalets with spa and cinema and penthouse embellish the essence of a large family dwelling. The Scandinavian pine wood, fior di bosco veined marble, wool, polychrome velvets, and brushed brass bestow an intimate atmosphere to India Mahdavi’s rooms. All the furniture was tailor-made to create, under the blonde wood ceiling units, a sensation of ultimate luxury.
‘A private house, a guest house, a secret and exclusive rallying point’, the Villa Des Alyscamps remodels the hospitable retreat to an ideal. In this mineral and spacious environment, India Mahdavi infused modernity and color by playing with patterns, tones, and textures as a tribute to the Camargue’s ‘guardians’ vernacular apparel.
Contemporary design at Hotel Condesa DF in Mexico by Mahdavi. This Hotel contains 40 rooms and it was designed for GRUPO HABITAT, CARLOS COUTURIER & MOISES MICHA.
The flagship of the beaumarly group, the café français sits on the bastille square and embodies the new version of a brasserie in a fluctuating neighborhood. The café français’ location, partially planted on the footprint of the bygone prison, is historic. In order to exist in front of a square that is a current republican symbol, a strong presence, and visual identity is required. The artistic direction was handed over to India Mahdavi and m/m studio (Paris) who, together, gave to the café français a graphic density whose vocabulary is declined into diverse scales in space, materials, furniture, and supports. The logo deconstructs itself and becomes omnipresent, radical, and exclusive. Everywhere, the radicality of the lines is assuaged by the softness of the furniture and the richness of the materials. The tricolor Frenchie finally mingles with newer tones and fresher shades.
Created for Jean-Francois piège, the Thoumieux was conceived like a private dining room, as a sort of portrait of the starred chef. It’s a hedonistic and joyful place in which the atmosphere is reminiscent of Chabrol’s or sautet’s films. India Mahdavi and m/m (Paris) have collaborated to instil the warm atmosphere of a country house in the city. ‘i was seeking a balance in between colors, warm and cold materials, masculine and feminine. Styles mingle, collecting in the forties, fifties or seventies, the sense of an eternal Paris.’
‘For the beach hotel, I imagined a timeless romance inspired by the Cote d’Azur’s imagery: Matisse’s colored juxtapositions, George hoynigen-huene’s striking photographs of elegant young women in their bathing suits or the Riva, a symbol of a distinguished lifestyle. Some more personal elements have also influenced the project – I spent a part of my childhood in nice’s hinterland and have since preserved strong memories of its scenery. By including vegetation to the seaside and bringing the mountains to the beach, I felt I was carrying out memory work. The color palette was defined by the seaside’s tone, such as certain recurring graphic elements: the stripes, that make up the monte Carlo beach’s identity, or the rhombus, reminiscent of the principality’s coat of arms. Instead of a ‘design’ hotel, I wanted to establish a modern, elegant and timeless environment – it is here a classic substantive work that I accomplished.’
It’s the story of an xxi century Marie-Antoinette who drags us into an oneiric experience in her ‘garden of delights’. The wicker armchairs, meringue-based tables, and omnipresent lattice work contribute to the conception of a delight. ‘a sensorial and ultra-contemporary voyage, a universe of freshness’, declares India Mahdavi about this project carried out in three cities. A sweet garden that celebrates the mix of the french groves and ‘gourmandise’. ‘i work on the idea of happiness and ‘gourmandise’, dear to ladurée, intimately laced with this notion of pleasure’. India defined a language, a three-dimensional new identity, which resumes the notion of the garden with a lattice, a pastel color palette that alludes to macarons, and a checkered floor that evokes a winter garden.
‘i wanted this house to be absorbed by the sky, to ground it, and provide a more modern provençal identity.’ for this renovation, India Mahdavi coated the façade with silver paint, allowing it to glisten as an olive leaf under the sun. The villa was stretched into the landscape in order to anchor it on a space overlooking the park. The cement bisazza tiles, designed by India Mahdavi, and the punctuation of the space with arches magnifies the graphical strength of the villa. ‘i like mixing simple materials to more luxurious ones, it gives a certain depth to objects, and a strong personality!’
‘Space established itself through a concept and elements of identity allowing to free themselves from a function: to imagine a world that belongs to the redvalentino girl evoking her desire to dream. It was essential for everything, from floor to ceiling, to convey the substance of fun somewhere in between reality and fiction, function and dreams.’ in this store, illusion prevails in a multidimensional space with the integration of a tender, surrealist pink and a dreamlike stream of mirrors. The brass and enameled ceramic, the charlotte armchairs and the Rubik and lolita display stands will ravish your senses.