It has been 54 years since designers and manufacturers of contemporary furnishings for home or commercial started coming together for one week in every April in Milan at Salone del Mobile. In conjunction with the main fair, which hosts major corporate leaders in design from around the world, there are also events and shows with independent designers and artists. The exhibitions cover a display area of over 230,000 square meters in the Milan Fairgrounds, showcasing products manufactured by 2,500 international firms, and attracting over 300,000 trade visitors from all around the world mainly Russia, China, Germany, Middle East with Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and Egypt in particular, US, UK and India.
This year Milan Expo opened its doors on the 14th April until the 19th April, focusing mostly on dining. The Triennale Museum supported this theme presenting two shows called Kitchens & Invaders and Arts & Foods: Rituals Since 1851.
The color trend of the show was blue, ranging from light blue-grey to a dark royal blue, appearing everywhere; on fabrics, plastics, walls, doors …everywhere. Toned steel, white, green, black marble and glass were the leading material trends. A new wood finish this year was smoked eucalyptus, bringing a fresh look. Wood, of course, was still the most dominant material for furniture with the use of metal and leather in the same product. Basket weave or grids were very popular adding an element of rigorous transparency to screens, cabinets, and more. Using different tones of gold and bronze was also common with many flowers, plants, green accessories and wallpapers. Native and naturalistic organic patterns were innovatively combined with a retro design.
The theme of the 18th edition of Salone Satellite, in which 700 emerging designers under 35 took part, was “Life Planet”, proving extremely popular. The Rho Milan Fairgrounds pavilions also contained Michele De Lucchi's huge installation “The Walk”, a circular path through the labyrinthine meanderings of the workplace, and architect Dario Curatolo's installation “IN ITALY”, involving 64 Italian companies and a select group of designers, planners and architects.
Material’s Village & Turkish Ceramic’s Kaleidoscope
Materials Village is a platform for events and initiatives dedicated to promote materials and manufacturing companies. Among other side events, its third edition took place in the gardens of Superstudio Più the most prestigious and visited location at FuoriSalone based in Zona Tortona. The innovative format consisted of houses with various dimensions and configurations, with exhibition spaces and socialization to connect the communities and welcome the travelers during the Design Week.
The sectors that took part at Material Village to discover new materials and working processes for providing new solutions and answers to the future world of production were:
ceramics: with Turkish Ceramics, and Florim
decor and interior design: with Coalesse,
technology: with 3M, color
materials for sustainable architecture: with Oikos,
the shoe industry, automotive, spa industry and safety markets thanks to the cooperation with XL EXTRALIGHT.
new solutions for wall covering and furnishing fabrics: with Elitis, adhesive coating, with Tile Skin, environmental friendly flooring for Oltremateria,
composite materials for interior design and lighting design: with Carmon@Carbon,
world of mosaic: with Friul Mosaic.
There was also an installation by Architect Marcello Cerasuolo: a multi-storey modular structure based on the idea of passive house.
Materials Village, to create a large global village dedicated to materials innovation, has already made its appointment with the London edition at 100% design, from 23 to 26 September 2015. Mark your calendar if you will be around.
Turkish Ceramics’ Kaleidoscope
One of the most appreciated hubs of the Material’s village was Turkish Ceramics’ Kaleidoscope by Paolo Cesaretti with Debora Palmieri and Ramy Bouchedid. Kaleidoscope is a design inspired from the historical riches of Anatolia, where the first ceramics were created 8000 years ago. As one can understand from the name, to give the kaleidoscope effect it consists of four “telescopes” directed to four different panels of decorative ceramics that have the textures and geometries of traditional Turkish tile patterns. With the optical illusion, visitors were invited to dive into a multicultural and multifaceted journey: everyone enjoyed the playful kaleidoscope effect with multiplied fragmented surfaces that they could see when they looked inside the “telescopes”.