Milan Design Week is quite unlike any other. It’s a week when excitement, anticipation and inspiration reign supreme. Where everyone has a place to go and where anyone is welcome. The 55th edition of Salone del Mobile lived up to and exceeded everything we were expecting, proving once again that great design is at home in Italy. The unique energy pulsing through the metropolis’ cobblestone and paved streets was palpable to thousands of visitors and locals alike who enthusiastically took in all of the events, installations and venues. As if we were all given the proverbial “keys” to the city, we spent the week uncovering Milan’s many hidden nooks and wandering freely through the open doorways of the grand stone palazzos - ordinarily refuges for only a few - that played host to breathtaking exhibitions that were intended to inspire and enthuse.
And inspired we certainly were. From the Fiera’s organized assembly to 5 Vie’s medieval pathways, the artistic enclave of Brera to the gallery-like warehouses of Ventura Lambrate and every zone in between, each destination spoke its own unique dialect of the same language - incredible design.
We got lost in the optical illusion installation created by Ferruccio Laviani for Foscarini lamps; were enchanted by Dimore Studio’s dark and broody apartment gallery; and impressed by the scale of Michael Anastassiades’ Double Dream of Spring lighting installation for Herman Miller. Our imaginations were further stretched with the No Sex project curated by Maria Cristina Didero for Atelier Biagetti and awed by Nike’s The Nature of Motion: Endless Explorations of Movement installation. Martino Gamper’s incredible collection of drums which used Nike laces to secure Nike Flyknit textiles over laminated plywood forms wowed us especially.
Meanwhile, we found the 50 Manga-inspired chair installation that Nendo created for the New York gallery, Friedman Benda, to be utterly amazing and our visit to the Shit Museum very pleasantly surprising; we actually stood in amazement at the Storica Societa di Incoraggiamento Arti & Mestiari, examining the branded products created out of Merdacotta – make sure you look that one up!
On the other side of the spectrum stood Baccarat’s glamorous, Lumiers out Of the Box, installation at the Fine Arts Academy in Brera which took our breath away - especially Marcel Wanders’ Le Roi Soleil spherical chandelier which had us daydreaming of prismatic rainbows - as did Moooi’s latest impressive collection in the Malmaison carpet series by Maison Christian Lacroix.
This in fact leads us to making mention of the pastel toned colour way which kept appearing all about town: all the way from HAY’s multicoloured presentation inside La Pelota - which inspired thoughts of 1950’s-era candy shops - to Patricia Urquiola’s console and mirror from the SHIMMER series she created for Glas Italia. Unsurprisingly, Patricia was a very busy designer this season - to prove our point we must note the incredible CREDENZA collection that she collaborated on with Federico Pepe on for Spazio Pontaccio which was inspired by the stained glass windows of holy sites.
Marble seemed to be another trend at this Salone, especially black Marquina marble which appeared in everything from Apparatus Studio’s Portal marble dining table, to the small, Niobe side tables designed by Federica Capitani for Zanotta, not to mention the Mr. Marble jar which was designed by Lorenza Bozzoli exclusively for the 10 by Yatzer collection.
This brings us to the last, but certainly not least, highlight that we’d like to mention: the 10 by Yatzer collection which we had the honour of debuting at Spazio Pontaccio in order to mark Yatzer’s 10 year anniversary and which features the limited edition creations of 10 incredible designers.
2016 has certainly proven to be an incredible one in the history of the Salone; one that has afforded us all with the wonder, enthusiasm and pleasure that comes with incredible creativity. Please join us for a virtual tour of some of our handpicked favourite installations, items and events that made this year’s Milan Design Week so momentous…
The Nature Of Motion: Endless Explorations of Movement by Nike during Milan Design Week 2016 | Via Orobia 15, 20139.
"time is TIME” installation by architect Tsuyoshi Tane of DGT (Dorell.Ghoymech.Tane/Architects) for CITIZEN. A surreal space generated with dancing light reflected in 100.000 main plates occupied an area of 1.000 sq.m in Superstudiopiù at Tortona district.