The Playlist of Vanessa Battaglia of Studiomold

The Playlist of Vanessa Battaglia of Studiomold

Gregory Han
Aug 3, 2012

Alongside partner Brendan Young, designer Vanessa Battaglia founded UK design consultancy Studiomold in 2003 to provide product development and interior design to local and international clients like Aeon, Touchtile, and John Lewis. In 2010, the pair founded Mineheart and produced a "lovable collection" of lighting, accessories, wallpaper and more. Vanessa shares the melodies behind her design in this week's Playlist.

What do you listen to while you work?
We usually have something on while we are working, mainly the radio. We tend to listen to cheerful BBC Radio 2 on sunny days and sometimes BBC Radio 4 on grey-rainy days. I really love Kirsty Young's Desert Island Discs.

How do you listen?
We have a small radio plugged in to our prototype "Cow Speaker" (below), and we also listen through our iMacs, sometimes with earphones if there is a difference in musical taste.

Do you have any favorite music websites/providers?
I often listen to music on YouTube, but also just recently found Soundcloud, which is quite cool for discovering new talent. Also, Spotify is great.

Does music influence your work?
When I listen to music while getting ready in the morning, it really helps me prepare for the day ahead and puts me in a good mood. If it's miserable weather outside, which is a lot in England, it especially helps. Depending on what mood I am in, I love the "Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World" medley by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole and also "New York" by Alicia Keys.

My good friend Bene Young has just written his first few songs (including one called "Loose Wheel") and released them on Soundcloud. I find it really inspiring whenever someone is doing something creative that they're passionate about. Releasing things out into the world for the first time is always a very exciting moment, whatever arena you are in.

Where do you find music recommendations? Who influences your musical taste?
I often discover songs I like from movie soundtracks and sometimes adverts on TV. More often than not I discover them through friends' recommendations, when we are at someone's house for a party or a meal. It is always interesting to check out other people's music and discover new artists. I don't really look for music, though; I just let it find me.

What song or artist best represents the work you create?
Most of my work is created in collaboration with my partner Brendan Young. I'm sure we would have very different opinions about what song or artist would represent our work. For me, it would be something different from the norm, unpredictable with a variety of influences, experimental, and a result of a team -- maybe "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen. It is a unique and quirky song unlike anything else. It moves in different directions; it's got such different parts and somehow it's serious yet still fun.

Ideal place to sit and listen to your playlist:
The Eames Molded Plastic Armchair with Rocker Base, in yellow. I love the rocking movement. It reminds me of the sea, and the bright yellow makes it feel like summer.

  1. Shake It Out, Florence + the Machine
  2. Let There Be Love, Nat King Cole
  3. Here Comes the Sun, Nina Simone
  4. The Lake, Antony and the Johnsons
  5. Chan Chan, Buena Vista Social Club
  6. Trois Gymnopédies, Erik Satie
  7. Empire State of Mind (Part II) Broken Down, Alicia Keys
  8. What a Wonderful World, Louis Armstrong
  9. Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want, The Smiths
  10. Together in Electric Dreams, Lali Puna

(Images: Vanessa Battaglia)

lifework2012-02-22 at 2.10.00 PM.jpgRepublished in partnership with Herman Miller Lifework. Originally posted by Jamie Latendresse.

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