I have been sharing with you for the past years my favorite installations, being always a highlight of the Milan Design Week. This year we have published already a couple of videos and would like to publish a new sum-up of the 4 Top Installations of the Milan Design Week 2017.
These are 4 installations and areas you should not miss when visiting the Milan Design Week:
1// Jellyfish vases by nendo
If we talk ‘beauty’, this was my number 1 this year! nendo, who is always a must-see designer, showed at the Jil Sander store his water tank installation with 30 silicon vases of various sizes and gradated color. The water current was carefully controlled so these ultra thin objects could slightly move with the flow of the water. The idea was of showing vases floating in water instead simply showing off flowers in a water-filled vase.
Fotos: Gudy Herder
I am glad we filmed a little snippet, this will be one of my favorite memories ever of this design event.
Video: Bureau of Stories
2// COS x Studio Swine
COS has proved to be another ‘mandatory’ visit throughout the recent years. As they team up with really interesting design studios, you can expect their take to be always one of the best installations.
This time, Studio Swine, a young design studio operating across a wide range of disciplines, has created New Spring, an interactive installation you had to line up for. The multi-sensory experience has been really beautiful with mist-filled ‘blossoms’ falling from a tree-like sculpture on the viewer who tries to extend the life of each blossom by carefully guiding the bubble with his hands (we all received black gloves at the entrance). Part of the magic of these bubbles is that they could come into contact with certain textured fabrics without popping for a moment. And when they did, they released a burst of sweet, custom-designed scents: bergamot and jasmine, oak moss and cedar, and lime and bitter orange.
The tree itself mimics the ornate chandeliers of Milanese palazzos and architectural features of Milanese columns and arches. We spent a nice while in the pitch black room enjoying the possibility of interacting. The little video below is the result.
Fotos: Andreas Asestiano
Azusa Murakami and Alexander Groves from Studio Swine.
As you can observe in the video, I had quite some fun playing with the bubbles (the smaller ones would last a bit longer:)
Video: Bureau of Stories
3// Lucca Nichetto and Ben Gotham for Salviati Glass
I first stumbled about Luca Nichetto‘s work in 2013 when he presented Das Haus at the IMM Cologne. Ever since, I follow his projects and totally agree on the fact he is considered one of the most interesting Italian designers. For this year, he has teamed up with perfumer Ben Gorham to present Decode-Recode for Salviati, renown glassmakers from Venice with a long tradition.
The event was even more interesting since it took place at Ventura Centrale located in warehouses below Milan’s Central Station that have been closed for 30 years offering an unexpected experience in a dark, humid and somewhat mysterious space.
The two gentlemen created 53 totem poles and worked with 23,000 sheets of colored glass, filling the huge terminal and reexamining the potential for classic glasswork becoming art, once again.
These two last images feature Strata, a second installation that explores themes of modularity obtained through a layering of 6072 thin glass sheets, formed to fold into each other. I preferred the first theme, but both were truly breathtaking. These are the kind of installations that make the visit so worth it.
Fotos: Gudy Herder
The Cloister of San Simpliciano is one of my favorite places to visit. Not only it is located in Brera, the district I love most in Milan, but the open air space always features the most striking installations. Depending on who is in charge of curating the event,the exhibition will be locate in one place or the other. This year, the Mindcraft Exhibition came back to San Simpliciano, showcasing some of Denmark’s most talented craftspeople and designers.
The inspiration for this year, TIME, according to curator and fashion designer Henrik Vibskov, sprang directly from the historic setting for the exhibition, the San Simpliciano cloister, where time plays a central role in structuring the flow and rhythm of life. Time also formed a key focus for the 18 makers and designers selected, who were asked to address and interpret a specific time span or time of day in their contributions, which are all created especially for the exhibition.
These are three of the works from different disciplines (paper, clay, glass) I related more to:
4.1. Starting All Over Again by Marianne Eriksen Scott Hansen
The paper artist has contributed with three exuberant, larger-than-life flowers that seem to have grown naturally, driven by the same irrepressible life force that enables tiny, delicate sprouts to push through asphalt. Such a creative feat takes time, and in the artist’s own words, her art is not only slow but S-L-O-W.
Marianne Eriksen Scott Hansen | Fotos: Gudy Herder
4.2. You Filthy Tart by Pernille Pontoppidan Pedersen
You know, whenever there is a ceramics project, it goes (almost always) straight into my top lists. This is no exception with the You Filthy Tart installation featuring three stacks of objects and surfaces made up of firm and viscous materials, with inspiration from layer cakes. The author references to afternoon tea, a short break with a sweet nibble, the pleasure of briefly kicking back and enjoying a physical and mental reset. The transition from working time to personal time.
Pernille Pontoppidan Pedersen | Fotos: Gudy Herder
4.3. Five Part Black Twill Collection by Tobias Møhl
His Five-Part Black Twill Collection’ features a collection of five hand-blown glass vessels which when transfused with light, the intricate ornamentation in the glass glows with a soft, organic expression, almost suggesting a force of life that is capable of sprouting new branches. These organic patterns could not have been planned or sketched out beforehand but emerge in practice, as Tobias Møhl brings his mastery of ancient glassblowing techniques to bear on the glass, all the while paying close attention to the possibilities that arise in the process, ready to seize them and create new, unique shapes and expressions.
Foto: Gudy Herder
Tobias Møhl | Last two images courtesy of Tobias Møhl
These are a few of the many installations the Milan Design Week 2017 was hosting. We are currently working on the complete Salone del Mobile 2017 report presenting a total of 8 fascinating installations including our own video snippets.