Maud Lerayer & Maria Romero present ethically and sustainably made goods with Latin origins.
“EL POPOP” is not just a wordplay on the Spanish pronunciation of “Pop-Up”, it also is a joint project by Maud Lerayer and Maria Romero taking place at 2 Rivington until June 4th. Behind the Hill is a brand that brings to its online customer’s objects crafted in South American villages with locally sourced materials. Every object has its own narrative: in a village that usually uses seagrass to manufacture their own beds and carpets, Lerayer commissioned pillows of a certain shape with the obligation of sourcing the commodity from the neighboring village in order to maintain a sustainable local economy.
Maud Lerayer’s story starts fifteen years ago when she moved to Mexico to study Spanish for nine months and ended up staying nine years. After returning to New York after working six years as the Latin America representative for a French communication agency, she decided to start Behind the Hill.
“I want to meet my clients and tell them my story,” says Lerayer when asked why she chose to open a pop-up store. As an online shop, it is indeed difficult to feel how the objects are skillfully crafted especially without exclamation. Amid other treasures, you can find copper vases from Santa Maria del Cobre, a Mexican town named after their copper-working skills, or clutches adorned with fine embroidery from a Guatemalan village where women embroider their husband’s pants as part of a tradition.
Across the room hangs the beautiful interior decor by Maria Romero, a Mexican born designer who was raised in Spain. Romero, who studied at the Instituto Europeo de Design in Milan, started working in menswear fashion at Maurizio Baldassari before working for Tommy Hillfiger in the US. Now she has created her own colorful universe. “I like to work with transparency through color in woven fabrics,” declares Romero. The reference to Josef Albers’ color theory is apparent when looking at the series of pillows seated comfortably along a shelf against the wall.
In addition to her collection, she is also presenting a new project called Tintoria Closet which includes seven natural dyes made from madder root, acorns, onion skin, pomegranate skin, avocado pit, cochineal and indigo. As the textile industry is responsible for a large part of water contamination and air pollution, these products are available for purchase in large bottles so consider coloring your undies in an ecologically responsible way! It all starts with what you decide to wear.
Shop the El Pop-Up until June 3rd at our 2 Rivington location.