Built in collaboration with 6th Sense Interiors and lots of other first grade artists, having steampunk and dark-fantasy influences, Q Caffe’s new design illustrates the social man’s path, presented from different perspectives, and the complexity of the oneiric, fantastic dimension that pushes past reality’s borders, amplifying and even transforming it. Each visual element has been thought through and worked on to the smallest detail, constructing this fabulous ensemble of metaphors.
The first room is dominated by Icarus’s figure – a mythological character who paid the ultimate price in order to reobtain his freedom. Sculpted on the entire front side of the bar, he symbolizes man’s aspiration towards freedom. Above him, the noise of daily life – represented by a multitude of sculpted hands and tongues – that triggers the puppeteered man’s balancing game: some dance, others walk, some are having a conflict, but all of them act out of the need of not tipping over, of remaining in a fragile equilibrium.
The transition towards the second chamber is made by the Human Chain, a disturbingly beautiful mural sculpture that symbolizes the loss of individuality and humanity. Faceless silhouettes that appear to be absorbed by the sometimes void of sense and humanity whirlwind of life. The world’s uproar is everywhere, contrasted everywhere by mankind’s need to escape from the grasp of this tornado that traps story fragments, anxieties, shards of the past and pieces of your soul.
Like in Icarus’s story, there’s an alternative, a hope that maintains the fragile inward equilibrium, illustrated by the hot air balloon in the center of the room. This represents a transcendental means of transportation that carries its passengers towards a better world of liberation, in which one can be himself, away from the systemic and social constraints.
The third room, the third chapter of the story, speaks about a man and his transformations. One of the main elements of the decor is the suitcase wall with its scenes that symbolize our immaterial baggage, in which we have deposited perceptions, experiences and ideas about love, art or consumerism. The suitcases expose the dominated individual, burdened – or even subdued – by certain conceptions and aspects of the society he lives in. The contemporary social “baggage” transforms the individual in the irrational, decaying world’s prey, which sets the most tempting traps for him. This image is made whole by the puppeteer’s “inhuman” figure – a metallic, steampunk octopus hanging by the ceiling, whose tentacles are ready to grab you in a fraction of a second and take away your freedom and individuality.
These aspects are also suggested through the four symbolic characters that give life to the Q Caffe universe: the machine man, the man with no scruples, the chaotic man and the praying man. Being archetypes of the contemporary man, they highlight the idea that the individual chooses, consciously or not, through what he does and believes, between being a puppet or being authentic and humane. The proposed problematic is of the man caught in the trap of his day to day constraints, imposed by society, who tries to escape in order to be himself again and have meaning in life.