This year’s key presentations took place in the crypts beneath Milan’s Central Station. Renamed Ventura Centrale after the successful Ventura Lambrate, one of the regular Salone locations, it was a great place to visit during the Milan Design Week. One of the contributors was the Dutch Baars & Bloemhof, which attracted so much attention in recent years with its presentations at the Dutch Design Week and elsewhere. With the help of various Dutch designers, Baars & Bloemhof demonstrated that wonderful things can be made from sheet materials. The lamp object in the photograph is by Sabine Marcelis. The presentation was designed by Daphna Laurens.
The sun is shining and hopes are high. The whole world was here and we met them all: Stefan Diez, Jaime Hayon, Wendy Plomp, Rosanna Orlandi, Matteo Cibic, Nika Zupanc. No finer playground than the Salone in April. These are a few of our favourite finds.
Karpeta + Texturae
Probably the most beautiful presentation in Milan. Unexpected, sensitive and with a touch of Dutch! In a former school building from the 1950s (asbestos flooring and all) a bit seedy, you know what I mean – wall coverings and carpet label Karpeta + Texturae managed to create an extraordinary presentation. By making only good choices, colouring the walls and strategically mounting wall panels, it succeeded in moving every stylist in Milan. We were pleased to see the presentation included work by the Dutch Brit van Nerven. We were proud. Again.
Marvellous Muller Van Severen surprised us at this Salone with a very special presentation named ‘Fireworks’. On the top floor of the Art Deco building nicknamed The Kremlin they showed their latest work – four folding screens for the Massimo De Carlo gallery – in a kind of round observatory overlooking the whole of Milan. Before the two began their collaboration Fien Muller was a photographer and Hannes Van Severen (son of designer Maarten Van Severen) an artist. Together they create furniture-like objects in beautiful shapes and the most wonderful colour combinations, something for which the duo seems to have an eye. The objects are made from paper-thin enamelled steel, which makes the colours look even more saturated, and have the thin black rims that come with enamelling. In a single word: fantastic. This is actually the best thing about the Milan Design Week: you get to visit places nobody gets to visit and to experience the most amazing presentations. Magical!
Scholten & Baijings designed a sofa, armchair and chaise longue for Herman Miller that look as if blankets have been folded over their backs. It sounds simple but it isn’t, not in the slightest. The models are meticulously detailed and both the shape and the colour palette are utterly sophisticated. The colourings of the wooden frame and the lining are tone-on-tone. The fabrics are by Maharam as well as by Scholten & Baijings.