Format, a Melbourne based non-mainstream furniture company, will this year bring Maison Martin Margiela’s Groupe collection, from Cerutti Baleri, to designEX . Format is the exclusive Australian agent or retailer for this distinctive design house. designEX design exhibition will run from 13th to 15th April at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The Groupe furniture collection is the work of Belgian fashion designer Martin Margiela, and consists of the Groupe Sofa and the Emmanuelle Armchair.

Maison Martin Margiela (MMM) presented ‘visions’ of a home collection in Milan, and Cerutti Baleri commercialised these designs and presented them at Salone de Mobile in Milan last year. The sofa and chair are the only MMM furniture items available.

The sofa is formed from an assemblage of different chairs, armchairs and couches from varying periods and styles. They are draped with and united by a white linen cover, cut and stitched so as to reveal the forms beneath, while hiding the original materials and colours.

Maison Martin Margiela has reinterpreted the Emmanuelle armchair in the same way, swathing its iconic shape in a white cotton cover.

Format Furniture is the brainchild of John Parker who began importing and retailing European furniture and items for the home six years ago. Collections offered have always represented Parker’s personal taste, with the emphasis being firmly in the unexpected and diverse.

“We aim to present an alternative to the increasing homogeneity of the home furnishings sector and offer a truly unique view for contemporary interiors,” Parker says.

Format currently represents Cerutti Baleri and Arflex, the historic Milanese company known for its catalogue of design classics.

Format also shows the poetic lighting of Italian architect, Michele de Lucchi, the original ‘Ptolomeo’ vertical bookstands of Bruno Rinaldi and a varied collection of tableware, ceramics and glass.