Highlights from Milan Design Week 2014, Part I

The ColorVoyant Watch

Welcome to The ColorVoyant® Watch!

In this blog report I will highlight some of the general trends I found in design savvy Milan in April 2014. Among seeing the return of “USA Southwest” design, newspaper wood and architectural lace were new expressive translations of familiar materials. Hand-made looks gained more and more popularity, as well as abundant options for shapes and finishes.

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General trends: University of Design in Milan

After six years of mass transit improvements and fashion hubs in the city, Milan is poised to host the 2015 European Expo from May 1 through October 31, 2015. Pictured is the south entrance to the iSaloni Fairgrounds that hosts the main exhibitions of Milan Design Week.

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The Corso Como section of the city will begin hosting fashion week in 2015 with new building development just outside the Porta Garibaldi train station. It also hosts the new Eataly culinary market owned by celebrity chefs Mario Batali and Lidia Bastianich. The original Eataly opened in New York City several years back, now expanding into their native country, via Milano. www.eataly.com, www.eataly.it

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Corso Como fashion district – Milano from the Brera design district. Where Milan’s future and history meet.

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INTERNI Magazine’s annual design exhibitions at Universita degli Studi di Milano’s courtyard and atrium. This year’s theme was Feeding New Ideas for the City.
http://internimagazine.com/events/feeding-new-ideas-for-the-city-eng

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Chinese design collective Designing China curated by Yang Dongjiang at INTERNi Magazine’s exhibition in Milan. From top Bright Moonlight by Ju Bin made of cloth, wood and metal… light and airy material mixing. Nest chair by Gao Yang made of bamboo sticks and paper chair by Jamy Yang. Sherman Lin’s Sky Ladder made of Chinese Moso Bamboo. Collective of artists for Yu.
www.internimagazine.com/events/feeding-new-ideas-for-the-city-eng/in-exhibition-design-1/exhibition-designing-china-curator-yang-dongjiang

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Archea –10 large stylized trees in wood and bamboo form a natural nave—reminiscent of Gothic churches or branches in a forest. An expose of a sustainable ecosystem where trees determine the architectural space.

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ENtreePic is a sculptural botanical system made with biodynamic cement in a pale color. This material and technology will form the “skin” of the Italian pavilion for Expo 2015, designed by Nemesi & Partners.
http://vod.com.ng/en/video/Ksoy4AGp-f8/ENtreePIC-Nemesi-Partners

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Paola Navone designed Beauty Seed, which encourages those who design future cities to trust in the regenerating power of beauty. The multicolored camouflage motif is inspired by the color range of the 24Ore Silk eye shadow of Deborah Milano.

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Virus… a theme of creative spheres and forms constructed out of textiles from C&C Milano, used in an architectural dimension, away from domestic application.

 

General trends: Concepts and Themes

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Lighting company Tonone animated their entrance with innovative lighting style at Ventura Lambrate.

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Southwest returns with Dante’s Scenes from the Prairie design…a popular style expanding into the future. Dante-Goods & Bads.
www.dante.lu/dante/showroom

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Three years ago, the Dutch design house VIJ5 made their debut of NewspaperWood at Ventura Lambrate. Now they were back with a refined sense of colorful style, utilizing recycled colored newspaper for their applications. Streaks of color or no color show newsprint paper stacked and pressed into blocks and then cut into cross sections that resemble wood grain. Their design applications are endless and versatile.
www.vij5.nl/KrantHout_0_EN.html

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Outdoor cooking pavilion of “structured lace” at Triennale Design Museum.

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Lace becomes more refined and basic with mesh materials allowing depth to play with translucency, light, texture and shape. The first three images from top: Patricia Urquiola for Moroso followed by Hella Jongerius for Vitra and Parri Chairs… enlarged mesh.

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Christa van der Meer’s interpretation of translucent textile fashion exhibit called “Iminjunju”, student of The Royal Academy of Art, The Hague.
www.christavandermeer.com/iminjunju-show/

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Handmade looks continue to make personal statements from Bokja to Rossana Orlandi to Gan. Images from top: Missoni, Gan and Bokja at Spazio Rosanna Orlandi.

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Handcrafted lace-work design is functional and delicate.

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“Balls of yarn” seem to be all over the city, with the idea of textile taking a twist and turn using barbed wire, wool and wax (top)! Image from EuroCucina.and yarn candles from Missoni.

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Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design’s color is organically gorgeous and dimensional.

Colors from the Tikkurila Symphony collection

Image Map

 

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Ombre from last year is artfully updated and fused with watercolor effects. Chair from Diesel.

Colors from the Tikkurila Symphony collection

Image Map

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From top: Matte to dry finishes with : Nika Zupanc’s porcelain with slick high sheen metallic finish inside. Sucabaruca coffee set produced by Mjölk…porcelain with a soft dry finish. Stay tuned for this finish to dominate interior spaces.
http://store.mjolk.ca/index.php?plus=1

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Black and white have become a basic. Its newness is in defining shape and form through color contrasting. Top: Křehký at Rossana Spazio Orlandi. Bottom: Walk the line exhibition also at Rossana Orlandi.

Colors from the Tikkurila Pro Grey card

Image Map

 

General trends: Shape

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Shape and size are on the rise, creating patterning and surface interest. Designer Kyuhyung Cho for Studio E.O at Spazio Rossana Orlandi. Geometric shapes stacked, providing functional shapes for books, wine, or just plain decorative interior architecture.
www.facebook.com/studioeo

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Herringbone applications can be seen in furniture, textiles, flooring layouts, and wall installations. Images of Missoni products.

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Random geometries meet for wall and interior function. From top: Both MDF. Bottom: Piet Hein Eek at Spazio Rossana Orlandi.

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Micro squares (or mosaics) are digitally enhanced with pattern and color. Two top images show Karim Rashid’s work of art. Bottom: Triennale Design Museum.

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Piet Hein Eek’s latest mosaic end-cut wood collection takes a natural turn for the best at Spazio Rossana Orlandi.

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Honeycomb reflects universal appeal. From top: Diesel for Moroso, Hella Jongerius for Vitra and Puglia exhibition at Triennale Design Museum (research).

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And fractal dimensions, turning from hexagons to triangles and diamonds, reign all over the city exhibits…

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New interpretations of triangular shapes…Bottom image of Adrenalina.
www.adrenalina.it/

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Spherical shapes: Monolith from Ross Lovegrove for Moroso.

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Marazzi Tile at Triennale Design Museum.

Bar codes of color gain more momentum, translated in multiple materials: from marble to porcelain, to wood, to recycled materials.

Final words

The next ColorVoyant Watch blog report will reveal futuristic tech savvy, yet retro, kitchens from Milan Design Week. Luxurious bathrooms continue to set trend with shape, material hybrid, and conceptual colors.

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