Sweet tooth


The Big Art Company creates a wall finish for Vivel Patisserie Boutique using a Marmorino plaster effect tinted with the colours of cinnamon, pistachio and biscuit

UAE: The Big Art Company, which specialises in murals, fine art, scenic artwork, trompe l’oeil and faux paint effects, has returned to Vivel Patisserie Boutique, in Dubai Mall, to create a flower garden, from now until June 6.

The firm, founded in 2010 by Stephen and Samantha Chambers, operates from a gallery and studio space in Al Quoz, Dubai, and created a wall finish, made from a Marmorino plaster effect and tinted with the colours of cinnamon, pistachio and biscuit, for the patisserie.


“We created a wall finish that complimented the Persian sweets and cookies,” said Chambers.

“It meant a lot of product tasting, which was no hardship, but we wanted to capture the essence of the sweets and bring a warmth and richness to the shops.”

The Big Art Company has designed multiple Vivel boutiques around the UAE, most recently in Baku, Azerbaijan and was brought back to create further finishes when the patisserie launched its collection of teas and herbal infusions.

“The striking black and gold packaging of the tea and traditional Persian motifs was the inspiration behind the final finishes, which have become the backdrop to all the Vivel Patisserie boutiques,” added Chambers.

The finishing touch to its flagship store in Dubai Mall is a large commissioned artwork painted in the traditional Persian style depicting a classic tea drinking ritual. Muralist and managing partner, Steve Chambers, hand-painted the piece with the art department team. The canvas measures three metres in length and took over three weeks to complete. “It is extremely rewarding to be part of the design and signature look of a brand and to also grow with it,” said Chambers.

“Our original contact with the client was purely for a decorative project to an existing shop which had become outdated and worn looking. We worked really well together and from that we were asked to grow the idea and develop the concept and design of the shop.

“The brief was to create an overall look that captured the essence of the brand without overpowering it. Evoking a cosy, richness reminiscent of Persian tea houses, but with the contemporary elegance of a European patisserie. The colours and textures had to be edible, organic tones.

The overall look had to be simple and classic to stand the test of time, but to also have striking elements to define the brand.”

Each sweet, nougat, pastry and macaroon is hand-made, which means the shape and form are all slightly different. The display units are created in diametric opposition, to accentuate and highlight the products.

Simple and functional floating slabs, solid lines with maximum product display in dark wenge wood, stone and granite. The main challenges were the imposing support columns close to the main entrance.

“The column in Dubai Mall is positively monolithic, but it became the catalyst for creating a new finish to highlight rather than disguise the structure. We used a jet black venetian plaster, to give a reflective marble feel with Persian stencils in gold leaf paint,” added Chambers.

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