Every year designers and enthusiasts flock to Milan to witness the latest from the furniture design world. Trendesign reports on the highlights from this year’s Salone del Mobile.
Opening the 54th edition of the annual Salone del Mobile in Milan in April, the internationally leading furniture trade fair hosted over 2,100 exhibitions and 700 young designers.
Held at the Milan Rho Fairgrounds, covering over 200,000-square-metres of exhibition space, the event welcomed over 300,000 visitors from the around the world who flocked to glimpse the latest designs and innovations.
This year, the fair featured the annual Salone Internazionale del Mobile, the International Furnishing Accessories Exhibition and SaloneSatellite, which highlights up-and-coming designers. Also this year, visitors experienced the biennial Euroluce lighting exhibition and Workplace3.0/SaloneUfficio, which reimagined the workplace.
A central theme of the 2015 fair was story telling. Stories of beauty that covered new ground in terms of aesthetics and stories of local design with many designers incorporating regional influences, such as traditional Swedish furniture design, a trend that has taken over the international market.
Here are some of the highlights from this year’s show…
Celebrating its 28th edition, Euroluce presented the very best from the lighting world. The exhibition presented products showing the latest technological innovation and design excellence in the lighting world that makes this showcase the benchmark.
The biennial event included 475 of the best exhibitors in the sector, from Italy and around the globe. Products encompassed the latest for outdoor, indoor and industrial lighting systems as well as special use lighting and lighting application software.
This year, Euroluce staged a cultural, light-themed installation-event Favilla. To Every Light a Voice, which was conceived by Italian architect Attilio Stocchi in celebration of UNESCO’s proclaimed International Year of Light 2015 and Light-based Technologies. The installation focused on the questions: “What is the intrincic, physical nature of light? And how does it travel and get to us?” To respond, a black box with an interior of a “magnificent prism” where light was “intensified like in a crystal” was created, which resulted in an incredible, immersive experience.
Workplace3.0/SaloneUfficio is an innovative exhibition dedicated to rethinking the workplace. Workplace3.0 hosted 127 exhibiting companies that presented designs that promoted new ways of working and the design essentials for “inhabiting” the workspace.
This year, the pavilion hosted Michele De Lucchi’s installation The Walk, which was devoted to the workplace. The primary concept was that “the office of the future needs to shed convention and breed innovation”. The circular never-ending walking path represented the importance of “never staying still, not even in the office” and the value in the art of walking.
The architect divided the installation into four themed areas that represented office life revealing the designer’s theories: Club, a communication platform; Free Men, individual and group work that promotes sharing ideas and skills; Agorá, designed for meetings and presentations; and Laboratory, the location of the creative process.
Michele De Lucchi hoped observers will “think of the workspace as a gymnasium for the mind, which means conceiving it as a place where relationships generate new ideas and possibilities. Offices of the future are changing landscapes, unfettered by convention, evolving spaces and perpetuate an endless stream of new ideas.”
SaloneSatellite returned this year for its 18th edition with 700 designers, 18 international schools and 4 installations. The event is dedicated to designers under 35-years-old who were chosen by a selection committee of key international figures.
This year, the theme for the event was Life Planet, which was represented through an installation and special projects by three designers and one design school.
Korean designer UMZikim (Jaehyuk Yang) created Gravity, the hidden ingredient, an installation that looks at gravity and its relation to defining space. From Francesco Faccin, Honey Factory looks at the culture of beekeeping. Caterina Tiazzoldi presented Nesting Nature, which was a rest area reflecting relationships between ecosystems in the Everglades National Park in Florida. The Art Center College of Design of Pasadena (USA) created The Five Elements, the garden abstracted, which considers our relationship with the five elements – earth, water, fire, wind, sky – in an effort to create a symbiotic relationship with our natural resources.
Also at SaloneSatellite, the 6th addition of the award competition presented three prizes. First prize went to Xuberance Studio (China) for its Cloud Series Lamp, which was created with 3D print technology. Second prize was awarded to Scott Haung Kinetic (Taiwan) for Dandelion Mirror, an interactive mirror that reacts to facial movements. The third prize went to Viktor Legin from Studio Copper (Australia) for his Balance Pendant, a lamp collection that can be repositioned with a weight, becoming a mobile structure. Honourable mentions went to the Mapuguaquén Speaker Series from Documentary Design (Chile) and KC1_CLIP coat rack from Out for Space (Germany).
For Trendesign’s top design picks from iSaloni 2015, click here.
Photography courtesy of the design houses and iSaloni.