Annette Hinterwirth was born and raised in Austria. A self-taught designer, she graduated in business administration before widening her design knowledge with classes at the Technical University of Vienna and the UCLA in Los Angeles.

Developing a passion for set design, Annette worked in the art departments of such Hollywood productions as Seven Years in Tibet or Project Peacemaker. Then, feeling the pull of New York, she started designing sets for fashion shoots and was soon collaborating with some of the world's most renowned photographers. Being very much interested in lighting, Annette started to develop a light object series - Wall jewels, inspired by glamorous jewelry designs of the 1940's to 1960's, which was brought to life in collaboration with Swarovski and first exhibited at Colette in Paris.

Since then Annette has been designing furniture, yachts, lighting and accessories for many renowned brands throughout Europe and undertaking architectural projects. 

A perfect match – sometimes you meet somebody and you immediately know that it will work. I wanted to design accessories for a long time and was working on a list of companies with great taste, perfect production, global distribution and a strong selection of talent they collaborate with.

"GAIA&GINO was very much on the top of my list and I was excited to meet Gaye Cevikel in Milan 2012. We were supposed to have 10minutes, but ended up chatting for much longer. It is great that we are launching our first product now, but to me it is even more important that I have found a true companion that absolutely values design and perfection."