Our latest exclusive comes from Providence, Rhode Island-based design studio Interior Theatre. Driven by a love of form and material, Interior Theatre experiment with combinations of new materials and shapes in attempt to create objects that are transparent, modest, and genuine. We asked Zach and Emily Martin, the designers, to give us a tour of their home studio and to explain the philosophy behind their playful creations.
Zach Martin: We’re Interior Theatre. I like to collect materials, especially ones that I can shape with tools. These include marble from old trophy bases, things from the sea, anything that has an interesting shape, as well as manufactured materials that have unique qualities. From there I build a palette with the materials I’m fond of and work my designs within that palette. I like to manipulate the materials by reducing them to simplistic forms and create a blend between the natural and manufactured. I carve all the materials into beads by hand. The Wave Necklace has beads made with lucite, pumice, reconstructed coral, marble, and sterling silver strung on a cotton cord. The Linear Necklace uses some of the same materials— reconstructed coral, pumice, sterling silver, marble, and also holly wood and oyster shell.
Emily and I are both from the New Jersey shore. We love using where we’re from as inspiration for what we can do. The shore town aesthetic can be quite eccentric. We’ve found it creates an interesting mix of visuals, shapes, and forms—something we both love to discuss as it relates to art, design, and living.
Our work space. Emily has been working on some sewn items that may make their way into our collection soon. The machine on the right is a dust collector to suck up all the dust that comes from carving and sanding the beads.
Our studio is also a living space. On the wall is a photograph Emily took. It’s part of her series “Arranging Things”. The shark jaw is something my dad brought back from his time in the Peace Corp in Tonga.
Much of Interior Theatre is about developing a type of spacial play with found objects as well as our own pieces. Here, two of my sculptures and a lamp I made co-mingle with a few rocks, a shell, and an interesting piece of hardware.
We’re always setting up things, trying out new ways to use materials and have them work dramatically in our space. This is a collection of some of our shells, a marble lamp I made, and some of my small sculptures.
When working on a necklace, I always end up with a myriad of shapes—a combination of beads that didn’t quite make the cut and beads that I may use for later designs or that just serve as inspiration for the next set of shapes I make.
Interior Theatre for Poketo Linear and Wave Necklaces are available in limited supply at poketo.com.