400,000 visitors descend upon Milan for the annual pilgrimage that is Milan Design Week. Enthusiasts flock from far and wide to experience the 6-day design extravaganza sprawling throughout the city, and there is an infectious energy and dynamism that underpins the entire experience.
It encompasses both the Salone del Mobile trade fair with a dedicated exhibition ground devoted to emerging products and technologies, and a labyrinthine centre of idea cultivation within the heart of the city itself known as Fuorisalone.
Each year the Salone del Mobile brings a fresh perspective on particular disciplines of design, from kitchens and bathrooms one year to lighting the next. This year was Euroluce – a carefully curated exhibition of the very best lighting in the world.
But it is so much more than merely a platform to launch new products. For us it is an unmissable opportunity to discern new trends and inspirations, and meet the people behind the ideas.
It is a staple in our calendar quite simply because it is the ultimate fusion between all aspects of design – architecture, interiors, furniture, lighting and new materials – that are integral to our practice. And where better to continue this discovery than in north Italy, not only where many significant design movements have been born but where an unrivalled craft manufacturing base still exists.
Our top finds from this year are as eclectic as the experience itself. A search for practicality and elegance was sated by the organised and clean lines in the bathrooms of Estudio Arque, remarkable mid-century inspired sofas by FDesign, and sophisticated lit shelving systems by Nilufar. Of course, a visit to the Depot is always a must.
Simultaneously, our fascination in new thinking led us to the discovery of cool digitally printed carpets from Marcel Wanders at Moooi.
Airbnb also pushed the boundaries with an exquisitely curated series of installations within the Palazzo at 65 Corso Magenta, overlooking Leonardo’s vineyard. Created to promote their new ‘experience’ ventures, they utilised no social media promotion, instead intending for it to be learnt of by word of mouth alone. Diverse indeed!
These highlights are by no means exhaustive, but they demonstrate interest in extremes that perfectly epitomises Salone del Mobile and Fuorisalone. You will see much of this finding its way into the design work in the studio.
For even more of our best bits from the week, visit us on Instagram