When Tom Dixon OBE selects you as his nominee for Maison & Objet’s Rising Talent Awards UK – an initiative whereby six members of Britain’s design elite choose an emerging star to showcase their work at the prestigious French trade fair in Paris – you know you’re onto a good thing.
Meet Zuza Mengham, a young, London-based artist and designer whose abstract aesthetic merges traditional craftsmanship with modern methods; think small geometric glass sculptures, enormous steel and neon chandeliers bursting with hanging plants, deep hooves attached to a tangle of neon green LED thread light, and Sculpting Scents, her series of swirling, multicoloured, gem-like resin shapes representing in three dimensions four of Laboratory Perfumes’ signature fragrances: Amber, Gorse, Samphire, Tonka and Atlas.
‘My work has always been seated in a deep preoccupation with materials,’ she told The Conran Shop. ‘How things work, why certain materials react the way they do, what you can create at a material’s point of volatility, fragility, and capturing the momentary.’
At present, Mengham is working on a series of sculptures capturing the synthesis of contrasting materials, such as powdered copper and slate; the artist is preoccupied with how the natural density of each component makes its united pigment dip and dive, creating a naturally marbled effect.
In Tom Dixon’s own glowing words: ‘It’s sculptural, its unexpected, personal and colourful – it’s photogenic and a little bit mysterious.’