5 months ago

Glossy Things To See at Milan Furniture Fair This Week


The biggest event on the design calendar starts today, setting the trends of how our homes will look. However many of the most interesting installations are at the Fuorisalone in the heart of Milan …


Bethan Gray Design is launching  her new collection at Rossana Orlandi gallery called “Exploring Eden”. This collection is made in partnership with Nature Squared – a company which has been embracing sustainability and social responsibility for the last 18 years and whose surfaces are in the majority of the world’s super yachts. The collection features furniture and accessories made from scallop shells, capiz shells, pearl shells, and pheasant feathers in a completely sustainable way. www.bethangray.com


“Conifera” is a large-scale architectural installation commissioned by Cos and made by London-based French architect Arthur Mamou-Mani from 700 interlocking bio-bricks printed in a mix of wood and bioplastic. Situated in the 16th-century Palazzo Isimbardi, it was inspired by patterns within the palazzo’s architecture. Mamou-Mani explains, “I wanted the piece to echo the circular nature of the compostable material and create a journey from architecture to nature in order to showcase how renewable materials, coupled with an algorithmic approach and distributed 3D printing, can create the building blocks of the future.”  www.cosstores.com


A cosy “bulbo” seat in the shape of a flower, a “mandala” screen inspired by yurts and a glass topped “anemone” table with an undulating base reminiscent of the sea are three of the new Objets Nomades by Louis Vuitton, currently on show at the Palazzo Serbelloni, Corso Venezia in Milan. The collection now comprises 45 carefully crafted accessories paying homage to the house’s sense of adventure and finesse with leather. The Campana Brothers, Maarten Baas and Patricia Urquiola are some of the designers who have created functional furniture in their own innovative style. India Mahdavi’s lacquered Talisman tray with its benevolent eye joins a Marcel Wanders diamond sofa and armchair collection and a Venezia lamp inspired by traditional Venetian lanterns. Also at the Fuorisalone is an intricate Temporary Paper Structure by Pritzker prizewinning architect Shigeru Ban. The unique modular construction demonstrates Ban’s ingenuity, particularly via the use of structural tubes made of recycled paper. www.louisvuitton.com


Borsalino is one of Italy’s most historic millinery brands and during the Furniture Fair its showroom in Via Sant’Andrea 5, will be adorned by a special wallpaper series (in fabric and fiberglass) by Momenti, inspired by Borsalino designs. Luxurious, elegant and reflective: The Tree of Life symbolises not only the relationship with nature, but also the beginning of a new life supported by firm roots and the “robustness” of a strong “heritage”. www.borsalino.com


Where to stay? If budget is no object, the Straf designed by architect and artist Vincezo de Cotiis is mesmerising in its minimalism. Otherwise Hotel Viu Milan is located in the up-and-coming Porta Volta/Garibaldi area and boasts spectacular views of the city. Its vertical garden is another stand out feature as is the rooftop pool area where sunrise and sunset yoga courses are organised on demand. www.designhotels.com

Fans of ubiquitous designer Tom Dixon will know he has decided to build something permanent in Milan rather than doing endless pop-ups. The Manzoni is the result – located close to La Scala opera house and a five minute walk from the Duomo – and multitasks as a showroom, bar, lounge and also a 100-seater invite-only restaurant. The latter is fitted out in a a series of upholstered chairs called Fat, the Spring series of pendant lamps, and Opal translucent globe lights. Via Alessandro Manzoni, 5 www.tomdixon.net

Penny McCormick

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