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Exhibitions

Milan Design Week 2022

As the design industry’s annual festival returns in full splendour - TDE brings you the highlights

6th-12th June 2022

By Adrian Madlener / 6th June 2022
Studiopepe x Galerie Philia, ‘Shu’ console, 2022, at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Studiopepe x Galerie Philia / PHOTOGRAPH: © Flavio Pescatori

Studiopepe x Galerie Philia, ‘Shu’ console, 2022, at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Studiopepe x Galerie Philia / PHOTOGRAPH: © Flavio Pescatori

AS THE MOTHER of all design fairs, the Salone del Mobile brings together the world’s leading furniture brands under the expansive roofs of the 753,000 m2 Fiera Milano complex. With additional offerings including EuroCucina/FTK and the International Bathroom Exhibition, this massive expo embraces the latest in kitchen and bathroom solutions as well as up-and-coming talents in the SaloneSatellite. Held this year from 7th to 12th June, the fair – in its 60th edition – will be joined by the robust Fuorisalone programme, an extensive selection of brand, school, collective, solo and gallery showcases that infiltrate every corner of Milan’s city centre.

Whether it be contract furniture, research projects, or limited-edition accessories, all facets of design are brought together for this week-long event. The massive happening sets the tone for the industry, both in terms of aesthetic trends and larger socio-economic tendencies. As exemplified by the leading fair’s 2022 exhibition – noted Italian architect Mario Cucinella’s ecosystem-inspired ‘Design With Nature’ installation – there’s an increased focus on sustainability and reimagining how we activate our personal and shared interiors.

Richard Yasmine, ‘FURRYBUM/SOFTBUM’ collection at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Richard Yasmine

Richard Yasmine, ‘FURRYBUM/SOFTBUM’ collection at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Richard Yasmine

Back in its full scale for the first time since 2019, this year’s Milan Design Week promises to be as exciting and informative but also as exhausting as in its pre-pandemic iterations. The Design Edit offers its highlights.

Alcova
5th to 12th June
Via Simone Saint Bon, 1
Milan Design Week’s hottest new destination is Alcova, a group showcase that surveys much of the design world’s experimental output. Occupying multiple buildings of an active military base, the showcase will incorporate an impressive array of 70 exhibitors, including food design maverick Laila Gohar, Italian ceramicist form-finder Elisa Uberti, Montreal-based lighting design brand Lambert & Fils, Objects of Common Interest, Copenhagen-based studio Tableau, and well-established Dutch practice Studio Makkink & Bey.

Among the eclectic array will be Refractory, a Chicago-based design studio developed out of the West Supply metal foundry. The young brand will be debuting its rigorously-crafted furnishings in a multi-sensory exhibition featuring images of paleontological specimens by American photographer Sarah Wilson.

Refractory, ‘Heretofore Hanging Light’, 2022, at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Refractory

Refractory, ‘Heretofore Hanging Light’, 2022, at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Refractory

The ‘Holotype’ showcase will feature pieces including the brand-new ‘Heretofore’ hanging light and the ‘Loma’ console.

Refractory, ‘Loma Console’, 2022 at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Refractory

Refractory, ‘Loma Console’, 2022 at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Refractory

In a nearby building, Alexis Moran, Alexis Tingey, Forma Rosa Studio, Jaeyeon Park and Ladies and Gentlemen Studio will participate in the ‘This is America’ exhibition, curated by US based global communications collective Hello Human in collaboration with the San Francisco experience design studio, Aditions. Seeking to break the Salone mould and bring greater diversity to the event, the showcase will feature new limited edition and one-off works by a slew of established and emerging talents in a bid to expand what defines American design.

Installation view, ‘This is America’ at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Hello Human & ADDITIONS / PHOTOGRAPH: Kevin Chung

Installation view, ‘This is America’ at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Hello Human & ADDITIONS / PHOTOGRAPH: Kevin Chung

‘Come Stay Taste’ will be another immersive installation mounted by local practice Studio Terre. Developed in collaboration with Italian Metal design studio Mingardo, the display will incorporate a curtain made of Murano glass beads and terracotta powder; the exhibit is intended to activate all the senses and promote a sense of wellbeing.

Installation view, ‘Come Stay Taste’ by Studio Terre & Mingardo, at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Studio Terre & Mingardo

Installation view, ‘Come Stay Taste’ by Studio Terre & Mingardo, at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Studio Terre & Mingardo

Nilufar Depot
From 6th June
Viale Vincenzo Lancetti, 34
Among Milan’s select group of mainstay galleries, Nilufar and Nilufar Depot are the most prominent. Within the latter, the gallery’s founder Nina Yashar – a true doyenne of Milanese design – will stage vignettes by an illustrious group of 25 designers from around the world. “We want to represent today’s zeitgeist, which is hardly any more about single choices, but rather about abundance, heterogeneity, medleys, opposites meeting, mixing and dialoguing,” she explains.

Exhibitors include Analogia Project’s Andrea Mancuso, whose Acquario works – artificial oceanographic landscapes achieved in glass and ceramics – will be introduced in different corners of the post-industrial locale.

‘Analogia Project’ at Nilufar, Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Analogia Project & Nilufar

‘Analogia Project’ at Nilufar, Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Analogia Project & Nilufar

While Ashley Hicks, Gabriella Crespi and Osanna Visconti collaborate on an installation inspired by Italian gardens, French designer Sophie Dries will debut the latest iteration of her ‘Levitation Alchemia Mirror’. Bethan Laura Wood, Audrey Large, Martino Gamper and Vibeke will also be showcasing new pieces.

Sophie Dries, ‘Levitation Alchemia Mirror’, 2021 COURTESY: Sophie Dries & Nilufar / PHOTOGRAPH: © Daniele Iodice

Sophie Dries, ‘Levitation Alchemia Mirror’, 2021
COURTESY: Sophie Dries & Nilufar / PHOTOGRAPH: © Daniele Iodice

Baranzate Ateliers
6th to 12th June
Via Milano, 251, Baranzate, Italy
Among the things that have come to define the ever-expanding and evolving Milan Design Week over the past decade are the discovery and reanimation of new premises. This year, Ventura Projects will launch the Certosa Initiative as a new Fiera Milano-adjacent campus for capsule exhibitions and installations, while Baranzate Ateliers plans to set up shop in the nearby 220 m2  Necchi Factory. Initiated by Brussels-based collective Zaventem Ateliers, the site will play host to many of its craft-minded residents and a few guests.

Installation view, ‘Baranzate Ateliers’ at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Baranzate Atelier / PHOTOGRAPH: Stefania Zanetti

Installation view, ‘Baranzate Ateliers’ at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Baranzate Atelier / PHOTOGRAPH: Stefania Zanetti

Supported by the Belgium is Design platform, among those presenting new works will be Arno Declercq, Bela Silva and Lionel Jadot.

Installation view, ‘Baranzate Ateliers’ at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Baranzate Atelier / PHOTOGRAPH: Stefania Zanetti

Installation view, ‘Baranzate Ateliers’ at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Baranzate Atelier / PHOTOGRAPH: Stefania Zanetti

Mounted in the same location, the ever-nomadic Galerie Philia will present Studiopepe’s highly anticipated entry into the collectible design world. Temenos – the word means ‘sanctuary’ in Ancient Greek – is a collection of monolithic chairs, consoles, mirrors, vases and lamps that stems from the respected design agency’s ongoing exploration of anthropology. By adopting the sculptural vocabulary of Noguchi and Brancusi, timeless natural forms are adapted for human use.

Studiopepe x Galerie Philia, ‘Seth & Sekhmet’ vases, 2022, at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Studiopepe x Galerie Philia / PHOTOGRAPH: © Flavio Pescatori

Studiopepe x Galerie Philia, ‘Seth & Sekhmet’ vases, 2022, at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Studiopepe x Galerie Philia / PHOTOGRAPH: © Flavio Pescatori

5 Vie
6th to 12th June
Situated just west of Milan’s iconic Piazza del Duomo, the quaint Cinque Vie neighbourhood will house many boutique showcases – ranging from recognised luxury brands like Apparatus and BDDW, to emerging talents breaking the mould of material and processes. In its ninth edition, the 5 Vie Network programme will activate a variety of empty stores, garages, churches and other historical buildings. With this year’s theme, ‘Prototyping Utopias – Design in Transition’, the platform endeavours to capture the moment and apply innovative design solutions to today’s most pressing problems.

Creative advisory Anava Projects and design collective Matter of Course are set to present ICH & DU, an exhibition showcasing commissioned works by a group of female designers based in Berlin. Studio Berg, Studio Elisa Strozyk, Unique Lights and Nicolene Van der Walt were asked to develop new works that reflect the relationship between the self and others. Nearby, the Athens Design Forum will mount Route-In, a showcase of the latest works by Rooms, aka Georgian duo Nata Janberidze and Keti Toloraia.

Matter of Course, designers part of ‘ICH & DU’ at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Matter of Course / PHOTOGRAPH: Anne Deppe

Matter of Course, designers part of ‘ICH & DU’ at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Matter of Course / PHOTOGRAPH: Anne Deppe

Throughout Milan design week, there’ll be a rising call to revive craft traditions as part of an initiative to preserve disappearing cultural practices and support a renewed understanding of sustainability. Noted Lebanese designer Richard Yasmine will debut ‘WOVEN Whispers’ – furnishings that, though inspired by Modernist forms, are created using ancient wicker techniques from the Middle East.

Richard Yasmine, ‘Woven Whispers’ collection at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY: Richard Yasmine

Richard Yasmine, ‘WOVEN Whispers’ collection at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Richard Yasmine

For a unique 5 Vie project, renowned designers Michelle Gerson, Guan Lee, and David Rockwell have asked Montreal-based furniture and lighting brand Gabriel Scott to reimagine its iconic Welles Chandelier. Taking on the qualities of jewellery, the geometric luminaire has been reinterpreted with softer lines, using vegan leather and engineered composite POLiROCK. The possible variations along these lines seem endless.

Gabriel Scott, ‘Floating Ideas’ installation at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Gabriel Scott

“Renowned designers Michelle Gerson, Guan Lee, and David Rockwell have asked Montreal-based furniture and lighting brand Gabriel Scott to reimagine its iconic Welles Chandelier”

Gabriel Scott, ‘Floating Ideas’ installation at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY: Gabriel Scott

“Taking on the qualities of jewellery, the geometric luminaire has been reinterpreted with softer lines, using vegan leather and engineered composite POLiROCK”

Farther Flung
Grace Prince will have her first solo show at Wait and See Gallery (Via Santa Marta, 14). The ‘Entropy and Desire’ exhibition – 7th to 12th June – will include works from the rising British talent’s ongoing ‘Static Fragility and Unsettled Balance’ series, in which she explores gesture and sensory processes within functional objects. Tom Dixon will celebrate 20 years of his practice with the comprehensive TWENTY solo show – 7th to 12th June – at Sotheby’s office at Palazzo Serbelloni (Corso Venezia, 16).

Maverick curator Matylda Krzykowski is teaming up with shoemaker Marsèll for a site-specific installation in the brand’s Paradise space (Via Privata Rezia, 2). ‘You Don’t Want Space, You Want To Fill It’ – 6th to 15th June – will bring together practitioners who work between design, art and performance to activate the staged environment and challenge the norms of spatial perception in contemporary society. Last but not least, Rossana Orlandi (Via Matteo Bandello, 14) will debut new collections by Brodie Neill and Ini Archibong among other exhibitors. If that’s not enough, there’ll be much more to see and take in.

Lisa Ertel, Jannis Zell, YDWS, and Matylda Krzykowski x Marsèll, ‘Defensive Shelf’, part of ‘You Don’t Want Space, You Want To Fill It’ installation at Milan Design Week 2022 COURTESY:Lisa Ertel, Jannis Zell, YDWS, Matylda Krzykowski and Marsèll

Lisa Ertel, Jannis Zell, YDWS, and Matylda Krzykowski x Marsèll, ‘Defensive Shelf’, part of ‘You Don’t Want Space, You Want To Fill It’ installation at Milan Design Week 2022
COURTESY:Lisa Ertel, Jannis Zell, YDWS, Matylda Krzykowski and Marsèll

Salone del Mobile

 

 

 

Article by Adrian Madlener
Article by Adrian Madlener
Adrian Madlener is a Brussels-born, New York-based writer covering a wide range of design-related topics. View all articles by Adrian Madlener