Milan Design Week Features

Photo from productnews.com.au

The Salone Internazionale del Mobile is a highly anticipated event that is held annual in Milan, Italy. Also fondly known as Milan Design Week, the Salone is a showcase of the best contemporary Italian home furnishing designs. This year the Salone was held from April 17 to 22 and featured over 200, 000 exhibitors.

Apart from innovative furniture designs, the event is also known for having design exhibitions featuring unique installations by the participating companies and institutions. It definitely has all that you would expect to be offered in a contemporary showcase in a central design hub. Here are a few features that created buzz around the blogosphere and the design social network.

Kenneth Cobonpue Phoenix Car

Image from Kenneth Cobonpue

Filipino Designer Kenneth Cobonpue has been making waves in the  furniture design field for a while now, but this year he really took his craftsmanship to another level by designing the world’s first car made from natural materials.

Image from Kenneth Cobonpue

The car, dubbed “the Phoenix” first made an appearance on the internet a few months ago, and was on prominent feature of Cobonpue’s exhibition at the Salone. The car itself is made from bamboo and rattan, both highly sustainable materials. As it is a conceptual project, the car doesn’t have an engine, but it already grabbed the attention of automobile company representatives attending the event.

Inside Out Lamp

Image from Lin Yu Nung

A very cool student project featured at an exhibition was the Inside Out Lamp by Lin Yu Nung of the Swedish HDK Design school’s Child Culture Design program. It made me think back of those times when I really wanted to go and draw on some of my walls and furniture (which I still sometimes wish I could do). It was exhibited along with other students’ work from the HDK program, entitled “Play in Progress.”

Lamp by Lin Yu Nung

Image from Lin Yu Nung

The Lamp looks like a regular standing lamp that can be moved around with ease to be tilted down or up. The shade has a polyutherane coating which encourages people to come and add their own drawings designs to the lamp. After the design is complete, the shade can be erased and a new design can be applied!

VisionLab Triennale di Milano in association with LEGO Installation: PinkVision – Art and Science Bricks

Photo from Inhabitat.com

There have been a few exhibitions and art installations I’ve seen in the last year or so that have used Lego blocks as building materials. In the same spirit there was an exhibition at the Triennale Design Museum featuring the work of 45 women artists and scientists who explored the meaning of “building” through the use of the playful bricks.

Photo from Inhabitat.com

The uniqueness of the project was the fact that all participants were women, and focused on how the female perspective enhanced the creation of the project pieces. Some of the resulting pieces were highly conceptual and rich with meaning and of course, playfulness. Critics hailed the exhibition for its celebration of the female perspective in design (which is still considered a male-dominant field), using contemporary materials to illustrate complex ideas.

This was just a little round up of the interesting features I found about the Salone – there are a ton of interesting and exciting events and objects that were exhibited during the design week. It’s definitely a trip I’d love to make in the future!

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