I’ve been publishing my highlights of the Off Salone for years now and wouldn’t want to miss the round-up this time either. Here go a few highlights of installations or exhibitions of the Milan Design Week 2021 where, more than ever, you could observe nicely executed the necessary motto of SEE, TOUCH & EXPERIENCE.
Josephine Akvama Hoffmeyer and Elisa Ossino have invited a selection of international design houses, exhibiting a medley of their finest works of furniture, light, ceramics, and art during I‘LL BE YOUR MIRROR at their H+O studio.
The interior is designed by installing a curated selection of objects and custom furniture dedicated to the mirror (that’s the official memo, I read it later and apparently did not see all those mirrors?!). You could walk through all rooms of an apartment (Via Solferino, 11) and contemplate one of the most nuanced color palettes I have seen during these days.
The colors were warm, contemporary, sophisticated. Only by looking at them can you recognize a particular way of combining color ingrained in Italian DNA.
Why did it make it into the highlights?
Successfully owning color is not an easy feast. This apartment shows skillful planning and execution across all rooms; it feels good to stroll from room to room.
2// CC TAPIS
A usual highlight during the Milan design days, CC Tapis gained probably the award of most published images on Instagram this year with their installation near San Babila with their Venus Powerful Collection by Patricia Urquiola collaboration. I’ll share below a snippet from the manifesto she added to it.
WE ALL COME FROM VENUS.
All human life on the planet is born from women. We are all sons and daughters, present or absent; we carry our mothers with us throughout our lives. Venus is love; she is beauty and desire: she is fertility, creation. – Adrienne Rich
Black lines define the perimeter of floating shapes and identify the single letters that compose the phrase “We all come from Venus.” A mission statement that alludes to Graffiti Art is also applied in the collection’s hypnotic texture: a vortex of color inspired by the intriguing atmosphere of Venus.
Everyone, regardless of gender, carries with them a dimension of femininity. An energy to be embraced, listened to and accepted. Strong, powerful, and joyful, the collection expresses a metaphor to make us think about the need to incorporate feminine attributes that coexist within all of us.
Of Arabic derivation, “Dag Allah” literally means “saved by God.” This term is the origin of the Italian word dagala, a word that refers to the islands of vegetation that emerge from the desolate volcanic landscape of solidified lava around Mount Etna.
This was the starting point for Edoardo Piermattei, who sees this term as the link between eastern and western cultures, between rug artisans and consumers. Playing with these origins, the artist further transformed the word into Dagallà, seeing the possibility of creating new formations that emerge from the surface of a rug.
Dagallà is a collection of 3 different rugs, Formation 1, Formation 2, and Formation 3, which are presented alongside artworks of the artist created specifically for the cc-tapis showroom.
This installation will remain open until December 2021, so if you didn’t manage to visit during design week and happen to be in Milan soon, you might want to visit.
Why did they make it into the highlights?
CC Tapis’ rugs have reached the long-time status of artworks. You don’t need an amazing palazzo to showcase their latest collection; a minimal, clean environment is what makes them look best. I loved the stripped concrete backdrop, and every single piece presented was a piece of art.
Another installation by Elisa Ossino and her studio makes it into the highlights seen at Cristina Rubinetterie‘s showroom in Via Pontaccio. In The Works represents a work in progress and tells the birth of a new showroom that specializes in bathroom and kitchen faucets since 1949.
This ephemeral structure expresses the desire to share an open project, leading from this September exhibition and Milan Design Week 2021 to the next spring show coming up in April 2022, for which Elisa Ossino will design not only the shapes of the new showroom but also those of the stand at the Exhibition Fair.
Why did it make it into the highlights?
Her vision focuses on a conception of space that goes beyond the formal abstraction of large displays that often just showcase the product. By designing a construction site concept, she invites to a place with an experiential and, therefore, memorable value. Exhibitions of bathroom and kitchen tabs often lack more experimental storytelling.
If you’re curious to see a few highlights of the Supersalone (it’s the Salone del Moble that comes in a new format), please see our previous article.