Around two years ago, my husband and I decided to relocate ourselves and our business (in its infancy) from Sydney to Adelaide, my hometown. I won't lie, we were very apprehensive about the move, initiated by: the promise of a far more affordable lifestyle, of course the home we were able to purchase as a part of said affordability, the ability to work on our business full-time from home and the family I had there. All good reasons, but none-the-less we were moving from a big city to a small one, and we knew that would have its challenges. Over the past two years however, we have watched this beautiful city grow into a league of its own, it had slowly been doing so over the past eight years, but in the last two the growth has been exponential.
If you live in Australia, you know Adelaide gets a bad wrap, something I really can't understand. It's a small green city, housing is affordable, the beach and the hills are within an arms reach of one another on opposite sides of the city, the food and wine are world-renowned, the festivals too... and what we have come to admire is how fiercely loyal people are to their city. When I was in my twenties, all I wanted to do was 'the norm' - relocate to a bigger city until I was ready to move back home, buy a house and start a family; it was the done thing at that time. These days you find people have a greater respect for Adelaide, its affordability and its community, in doing so they remain here, helping to build the city and its reputation. I guess where I'm going with this is.... it's people like STUDIO-GRAM, the young interior design team behind one of Adelaide's latest restaurants to open, OSTERIA OGGI, who give this place a good name. They do so not only by drawing attention to the immense talent that exists here, but by choosing to remain here and contribute to the growth of Adelaide city.
Though I've not yet been to OSTERIA OGGI, it is receiving a great deal of hype lately for its interior in particular, so too are STUDIO-GRAM - run by architects Dave Bickmore and Graham Charbonneau. The existing abundance of natural light in the building (due in part to the sawtooth roof) was the initial draw card and also the catalyst for the rebuild of almost every wall within. With the focus to be on the kitchen, they set out building a stage-like mezzanine level, to ensure this contemporary Italian eatery had its kitchen and all its staff on show. From there, materials became the key focus, an interaction between concrete, travertine and American oak set the narrative for the interior - all robust materials, that were to age discreetly with the interior to give the feel of traditional Italian spaces. There is a wonderful visual narrative within OGGI, each material, finish and fitting chosen carefully to contribute to such, interacting with one another in a subtle manner.
STUDIO-GRAM have also carefully used a great deal of local designers and artisans to see out their vision, including friend and local greenery designer Emma Sadie Thomson of E-S-T. Emma uses her background in Landscape Architecture to bring nature back into interiors - carefully sourcing and installing botanical elements to enhance spaces like OSTERIA OGGI. Responsible for planting their sky-high interior metal planters with both visually delighting greenery and more importantly, herbs that can be used in their kitchen. Other locals whose talents were utilised in this project are Katia Carletti, ceramicist and Tristan Kerr, sign-painter.
I can't wait to see what STUDIO-GRAM and Adelaide bring next...