Once a year, Milan makes sure it is at its best, to let you discover new places, and fall in love in new ways with other ones you thought you already knew. Designers, enthusiasts and insiders get together, to share ideas and inspiration, in-depth analysis, and to present new products at the Design Week. This is our guide to the most interesting exhibitions and events of Fuorisalone 2017: enjoy your full immersion in design!
The Baroque rooms of Palazzo Litta welcome the fourth edition of the collective exhibition A Matter of Perception, showcasing experimental art and international talent, produced by Mosca Partners and DAMN° magazine. This year, the theme is “Linking Minds”, a study of the special affinities between designers, companies and artisan workshops. The famous firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro, designers of the world-famous New York City Highline, are the special guests. The firm designed a special tensile structure for this occasion, made of 300 pairs of blue jeans, forming a canopy that connects space and sky.
Palazzo Litta – Corso Magenta 24
Tom Dixon loves Milan and is excellent at picking unconventional locations. This time, he chose the Manzoni cinema hall, which closed in 2006 and was now given new life along with the adjacent gallery, with the exhibition Multiplex – Yesterday Today Tomorrow, presenting the designer’s new pieces for his 2017 collection, as well as some updates on historic items of his, and his collaboration with IKEA, which will be presented to the public in 2018. The gallery hosts about ten temporary shops, all of which are dedicated to a different product line, while the former cinema, with its 1600 seats, its velvet decor and its sculptures by Francesco Messina and Pericle Fazzini, will be hosting a series of film showings curated by IKEA, organizing a true film festival made of shorts, feature films and documentaries about the history of design.
Cinema Manzoni – Via Manzoni 42
The Danes of MINDCRAFT are back at the Chiostro Minore di San Simpliciano, with their poetic, riveting displays. This time around, they reflect on the nature of time, and this is just the perfect location for that, since your viewing will be different depending on the time of day, and the weather. «Time is a strong presence at the exhibition site. The cloister looks like a parenthesis of time within the city’s energetic rhythm, and the atmosphere changes along with the light over the day». 18 selected makers and designers, guided by the new curator Henrik Vibskov, interpreted a specific moment in time, such as the coffee ritual, the drying of ceramics or the durability of objects, using all sorts of graphic supports, pieces of furniture, fabrics and glass…
Chiostro Minore di San Simpliciano – Piazza Paolo VI 6
It comes as no surprise that COS, H&M’s research-oriented brand, is famous for setting up the best installations at the latest few editions of the Fuorisalone. This year, COS chose to collaborate with Japanese architect Azusa Murakami and English artist Alexander Groves, the creative pair of Studio Swine. The two dreamed up a large, ephemeral sculpture that will be hosted in the space of former Cinema Arti, designed by architect Mario Cereghini in 1930 and reopened for the occasion. The art is inspired by blooming flowers, and it will involve the audience, to offer a moment of contemplation, exploration of matter, and a shared experience for the entire group.
Cinema Arti – Via Pietro Mascagni 8
An acclaimed and highly regarded name in design, and not only, and a name you will not easily forget after you see his exhibitions: we are talking about Oki Sato, founder of the firm Nendo, and a master who elevated objects to absolute perfection, with his mixture of essentiality and minimalism. Last year, Sato completely subverted public perception with his work “50 Manga Chairs”; this year he is showcasing his work with the exhibition Nendo: Invisible outlines, hosted at Jil Sander‘s showroom. The show examines matter, and its relationship with space. A series of vases, the Jellyfish Vases, fluctuate in space like jellyfish in an aquarium, in a harmonic dance of transparency, and barely perceptible shades, plunging towards a total immersion into the subconscious.
Jil Sander showroom – Via Beltrami 5
The Marni Playland! is expecting you in viale Umbria: a large sandpit, populated by impossible objects and sculptural furniture that abandons any idea of function, to embrace its more playful side. Marni introduces its new limited edition of complement furniture here: seats, stools, rocking chairs with armrests that double as containers, and armchairs with a small roof that can turn into little shelters to curl up in. All these pieces are handmade in metal, painted wood, and colored threads of PVC, weaved by a group of Colombian women who used their traditional weaving skills to find independence and emancipation through their work.
Marni showroom – viale Umbria 42
During the days of Fuorisalone, the Pelota, formerly a location for playing this traditional game, is infused with new magic, signed by Hermès! This brand is synonymous with discrete elegance, and it presents its home decor collection here, fully respecting the style of the brand in a bright pavilion, a timeless piece of architecture entirely made of natural materials, embellished by Hervé Sauvage’s scenic design. Furniture, design objects and leather accessories, of course; although it is their utterly refined wallpaper and fabrics, which can entirely change the style of a home in a single twist, that really deserve your attention.
La Pelota – via Palermo 10
«We started from the intimate dimension of a flat. The typical form of living for people who inhabit a city». This is the manifesto of The Visit, Studiopepe‘s Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara Di Pinto‘s new proejct. In a 19th century Milanese flat, they create an experience of beauty through the layering of styles, telling stories, end exploring sophisticated creative research. Their project was purpose-built for this space in Brera, with an intimate approach, rooted in the world of memories, with digressions into the worlds of art and fashion. Masters of the past engage in a dialogue with the latest design trends, in a selection that was enriched by collaboration with people of true excellence. Every detail was chosen with great mastery, in order to make this physical place a tangible representation of our inner world.
Brera Design Apartment – via Palermo 1
Interior design is gaining more and more importance, thanks to Instagram’s suggestions, breaking down the once elitist boundaries of the design world, widening the audience of design fans and enthusiasts. Blending clothing and furniture is becoming more and more common, and spaces are not only experienced, but also “worn”. Alessandro Guerriero‘s project Abitabito finds its roots in this reflection, and it will be showcased in historic fabric manufacturer Pratesi‘s showroom. An international team of female designers set up three domestic installations, each with a different inspiration: Fernanda Biagi’s “Dreamer Skin” is dreamlike and visionary; Lulu Zhang’s “In between” bathroom is colorful and bright, while “A Table Story”, Giulia Zorzella’s dining room, was based on the idea of a process of dematerialization of objects.
Pratesi Showroom – Palazzo Serbelloni, corso Venezia 18
Life as a journey: this is the topic of Louis Vuitton‘s exhibition Objets Nomades. This year, the exposition features 10 new pieces, reaching a total of 25 collectibles, made by the most interesting contemporary designers, who reinterpreted the philosophy of travel from their very own perspective. From the Campana brothers’ cloud-inspired couch, to Atelier Oï‘s incredible seat, with its leather straps that remind us of those on the maison’s signature bags, to India Mahdavi‘s carved table that reminds us of nomadic cultures, each prototype represents a new dimension to discover and explore.
Palazzo Bocconi, Corso Venezia 48
NOT JUST OBJECTS: A CONVERSATION ON THE FUTURE WITH IED
Design is not just about visiting exclusive locations and following the latest news about products, it is also about in-depth analysis and study. This educational mission is in the hands of IED, an institute that was very important for the design industry since its very inception in 1966, when it started welcoming talent from Milan, Italy, and the rest of the world. Save the date then, for on April 8 at 5PM at the Gallerie d’Italia you will be able to follow Design come Performance (Design as performance), a conversation between renowned Italian designer Alessandro Mendini and art critic and historian, and IED professor Loredana Parmesani. Architect Mendini will explore the figure of performer designers from the 1970s on, when all art rules were subverted, and artwork became performance that takes place within a limited time frame, escaping the logic of economy, as a consequence. This will be a unique opportunity to listen to someone who greatly contributed to promoting Italian design internationally, and to be part of a story in which IED is one of the main characters. Together with IED, who wishes to educate and promote future talent, just like The Blonde Salad, we joined forces, to start a project that involves IED students in our everyday activities. You’ll find out more about that over the next few months… Stay tuned!
Gallerie d’Italia Sala Mattioli – Piazza della Scala 6