Anna Resei (born 1989) is a conceptual designer based in Hamburg, Germany. She creates functional and abstract interior objects that explore our relationship with the material world. Anna graduated cum laude from Design Academy Eindhoven with a master in Contextual Design (2021) and was a finalist of the 15th Design Parade Hyères. Her works have been nominated for the young talent award ein&zwanzig as part of the German Design Council. She received a scholarship for Digital Crafts from Task Force Textiles at ABK Stuttgart in 2021 and is currently a designer in residence at MK&G Hamburg.


Ferréol Babin (born 1987) is a French designer and furniture maker. After completing his studies in Space Design in ENSA of Dijon, he moved to Japan, to the Nagoya University of Art & Design. In 2012 he graduated from ESAD of Reims, in Object Design. In 2014 he took part in a residency at Fabrica in Treviso, Italy. His practice includes both collaborating with various furniture and lighting editors, where he incorporates his singular vision and approach of design, and making unique, auto-produced pieces with a brutalist yet delicate approach. His projects are based on function and rationality, combined with a poetic and emotional dimension.



A year-long project started with a residency in Turin, Italy, and culminated in the production of a collection of works and the publication of a monograph book on each designer.


«Art is a sphinx. The beauty of the sphinx is that it is up to you to interpret it. When you have found an interpretation, you are already healed. The common mistake is to believe that the sphinx can only give one correct answer. In reality it gives a hundred, a thousand, or maybe none. Interpretation undoubtedly does not restore the truth to us, but the exercise of interpreting saves us».
Saul Steinberg (1)

«The invented image has its own truth».
Giordano Bruno (2)


Each object carries a share of pure enigmaticity, a fraction of the indistinguishable and imponderable – and therefore inexplicable, if not unspeakable – that accompanies its life cycle. The enigma, like an inseparable aura or an impalpable identifying character, is inherent in the existence of the object: from the simplest to the most sophisticated, all tangible presences are affected by a pervasive and persistent – but often imperceptible – fraction of mystery, because «in visible forms is present the invisible». (3)
A true metaphysical attribute, this connotation takes on values that have a ficklely variable intensity due to the sensitivity of the observer-user who interacts with the presence-object, but also to the context in which it is inserted and with which it is compared and measured.

In other ways, one often wants to grant the artifact the authority of a symbolic entity, of a talisman to be opposed to chaos and the unfathomable so that it can be useful in deterring the mystery coupled with the time of present and future existence, acting as an ideal optical device that tries to open a gap of vision through refraction – understood as the breaking, according to the etymology of the term – of the indecipherable.
The design of objects, following this reasoning, can be considered a practice with which to venture attempts to decode the inexplicable through the creation of tangible and variously interpretable emblems, which are incapable of revealing “the” truth but are functional in stimulating the comparison with the universal riddle proposed by the sphinx of living.
Because the emblem «[…] is therefore the most complex and organized of languages: the one that contains them all, summarizes them and surpasses them. […] Guide, indicate, teach. It introduces, if not to the Divine at least to the pure Idea». (4)

To specific categories of objects, therefore, we consciously or unconsciously attribute the role of potential torches lit in a space of darkness, of symbolic banners to which we entrust the task of emitting functional signals to orient us with respect to the many questions of everyday life, to the dilemmas that urge us on elusive and evasive issues such as the fata morgana, the mirage, the blunder.
Metaphorically speaking, these objects can be considered as single mirrors to be chained together in a game of crossed visions, to be connected through a theorem of reflections and refractions in an attempt – never definitive and never completely successful – to aim in the direction of the occult and the invisible.

What characters can these objects have?
What messages can they convey?
What categories or kinds of refraction can they trigger?

The “enigmatic refractions”, in the dense abstraction that the association of these two words implies, seem to suggest the idea of a phenomenon that concerns the behavior of light waves, the faculty of seeing and that of perceiving; but the spectrum of topics connected to this theme can expand dramatically, finding innumerable and unexpected consonances and correspondences.
Turin is a candidate for the ideal place to reflect critically on these topics, then giving them a creative interpretation; because, as the extraordinary metaphysical artist Giorgio de Chirico wrote, «the city is made for philosophical dissertations» (5), adding: «Turin is the deepest, most enigmatic, most uncanny city. Not of Italy, but of the world». (6)

(1) Pierre Schneider, Louvre Dialogues, Atheneum, New York, 1971
(2) Giordano Bruno, De vinculis in genere, Artemide Libri, Milan, 2019
(3) Riccardo Dottori, Giorgio de Chirico, Immagini metafisiche, La nave di Teseo, Milan, 2018
(4) Roger Callois, Nel cuore del fantastico, Abscondita, Milan, 2004
(5-6) Maurizio Fagiolo dell’Arco, de Chirico: gli anni Trenta, Skira, Milan, 1996