The splendid limited edition Riva Aquariva yacht tender by Marc Newson will be exhibited at Masterpiece London 2012, the exclusive art, design as well as antiques fair which is held from 27th June to 4th July on the South Grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. This special edition Aquariva yacht is constructed by the legendary Italian builder Riva, and styled by one of the most celebrated designers, Marc Newson.
The Riva Aquariva yacht tender by Marc Newson Photo: Riva7Ventura
The work of Australian Marc Newson will be well known to connoisseurs of fine design, from his exclusive furniture and watches, to large scale commercial projects such as his aircraft seats and departure lounge for Qantas.
A common theme in Newson’s more sculptural work is the style known as ‘biomorphism’, characterised by contours, forms and patterns inspired by the organic, ‘living’ shapes found in the natural world. There are few straight lines, plenty of undulating curves and curved surfaces, a look that is typified by the work of two legendary exponents of the style, Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth.
Not surprisingly, Newson was instantly attracted by the wonderfully flowing and curvaceous lines of the Riva Aquariva, and inspired to create the ‘Riva Aquariva by Marc Newson’ which is only available in a limited edition of 22. Working alongside Riva’s designers, Officina Italiana Design, Newson employed all of his skills in form, function and materials to create this very special version of the Aquariva yacht. Its simplicity and functionality are what make the boat so exceptional.
The Riva Aquariva yacht by Marc Newson - view from above Photo: Riva/Ventura
Newson’s reinterpretation of the Aquariva draws on both the current model and its forebear from the 1960s, the legendary Riva Aquarama. Newson has infused the Aquariva yacht tender with his streamlined and forward-looking style, using ideas from his work in automotive and aerospace design – epitomised by his novel treatment for the boat’s transom. For the foredeck and instrument panel, in place of the traditional wood, Newson has used a phenolic composite, a wood-like, textile-based laminate that made its first appearance in his furniture designs in 2007.
A precursor to fibreglass, this material was developed in the first half of the 20th century. While having an ostensibly organic feel and aesthetic, it is significantly more durable than wood. The wrap-around tinted windscreen is made from a single piece of laminated glass. Cleats and other deck fittings are in anodised aluminium. There are separate driver and passenger seats, and the interior can be upholstered in a choice of punchy colours that are typically Newson, including a vivid turquoise that recalls the colour scheme of the original classic Aquarama.
Mechanically, the Riva Aquariva yacht by Marc Newson is virtually identical to the current Aquariva Super from which it is derived. Twin 380hp Yanmar diesel engines drive conventional shafts through two-speed automatic gearboxes, giving the boat a top speed of 41 knots (47mph). The only addition is a bow thruster to aid slow speed manoeuvrability.
The Riva Aquariva yacht by Marc Newson - front view Photo: Riva/Ventura
Marc Newson’s talent, originality, taste and skill have brought him international fame. His creations range from sculptural work, furniture, interiors and watches to the transport industry, where he concentrates on aviation and aerospace design. He has also designed vehicles, including a concept car, bicycles, a concept jet and a sub-orbital aircraft. Newson’s work has been exhibited at major museums and galleries around the world. His works feature in the permanent collections at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the V&A in London and the Musée des Arts décoratifs in Paris.
When Newson’s chop top tables were exhibited at Design Miami 2007, all twelve examples sold in 20 minutes at $120,000 each. In 2007 one of Newson’s Lockheed loungers set a record for the highest price ever paid for a piece of furniture at $968,000. Another sold in 2009 for £1,100,000. 10 years earlier one example had failed to sell with an estimate of £50,000, such are the vagaries of the collector’s world.
Marc Newson Photo: Riva/Ventura
In 2005, Time magazine included Newson in its list of the 100 most influential people in the world. In the UK, Newson has received a number of design awards and academic acknowledgements. In 2006 he was awarded the title “Royal Designer for Industry” and in 2010 he received a Lifetime Achievement Award in The Design Awards.
RIVA AQUARIVA YACHT BY MARC NEWSON
Length overall 33 ft 0 in
Max beam 9 ft 2 in
Displacement (unladen) 4.7 ton
Engines 2 X Yanmar 6 LY3/UTP
Engine power 2 x 380hp
Drive system shafts & 2-speed automatic gearboxes
Max speed 41 knots
Cruising speed 36 knots
Range (cruising speed) 150 nm
Unladen displacement 5.26 ton
Bow thruster Std
Fuel 105 gal
Water 28.6 gal