New Talent, Materials and Brands In Salone del Mobile Making Their Debut
Discover budding new talents and utilising new materials, we look at these innovative furniture and lighting brands making their debut.
From exploring new materials and making their debut collection at the recent Salone Del Mobile 2022 (6 to 12 June), we find an array of intriguing products and new talents! The furniture industry is rife with designers being curious about materials or brands breaking ground with their innovative designs and artisanal know-how. Here’s our pick of the crop.
Roberto Lazzeroni’s Secret Garden armchair for Poltrona Frau is the brand’s foray into outdoor furniture. The renowned designer has designed for countless furniture brands such as Flexform Mood and Baxter. The chair’s rounded corners and edges make it stand out all thanks to impeccable woodwork craftsmanship.
The wooden teak frame is designed to embrace the sitter while the backrest comprises two-tone cotton, woven straps in ecru and taupe hues. All cushions are removable and make light work of water to dry quickly.
Flos — Exploring New Material
The Arco floor lamp designed by Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni brothers in 1962 has become an icon for Italian lighting brand Flos. This year, it marks the sixtieth anniversary of this legendary lighting instrument. Dubbed the “Arco K 2022” limited edition, this will be the first time Flos engineered a crystal base to support the spun aluminium reflector and its curved stainless steel adjustable stem.
The original Arco was conceived as a weighted marble base and the iteration for 2022 will be Flos’ inaugural exploration of utilising new materials. The Arco K 2022 will definitely be a collectible item for my design heads everywhere. This stunning lamp is an exclusive online limited edition.
Gan Rugs – Kengo Kuma Debuts His Masterful Designs
Master architect Kengo Kuma’s Goz rug for GAN is all about getting your feet to feel nature. Goz echoes the meticulous devotion to artisanal techniques through the intricate weave and thin wood slats. The inaugural collection for Gan demonstrates the architect’s deep love for genuine handmade objects using organic materials in their natural state.
The collection offers three rugs called Kiri (fog), Ame (rain), and Tsuchi (soil). Gan taps on expert craftsmen who utilise manual looms to interweave teak wood rods – circular, semi-circular, or square cross-section — into a complex weave where virgin wool enriches the tapestry.
Depadova – Courting With Paul Smith
Paul Smith’s sartorial magic for DePadova marks his first collaboration with the feted Italian furniture brand. His flair for colour is evidently displayed in the numerous details found in the collection of sofas and armchairs. There are coloured leather straps to bind the seat’s structure, not forgetting the leather pockets hooked onto the finely rounded armrest with its pleasurable ergonomics.
However, Smith’s Midas Touch is found in his signature colour palette: deep shades of midnight blue and peacock, sublime ecru, earthy brick red, or a splash of lime green belonging to the upholstery. This project is a confluence of fashion and furniture dubbed “Everyday Life” by Paul Smith. Even the poufs offer contrasting stitching which demonstrates this master’s sartorial know-how.
Gemla — Swedish Debut
Gemla’s Swedish roots delved into the manufacturing of tennis rackets. However, the brand is now more renowned for creating furniture pieces today. The Swedish furniture brand’s first participation in the Milan furniture fair — Salone del Mobile — clearly excited attendees at the fair. British designer Samuel Wilkinson’s “Gemla Open” lounge chair features elegant armrests and a sinuous, sculpted backrest.
The wood of the chair is derived from solid FSC-certified ash. To create the curved aesthetic, the wood has been bent by hand with steam while the seat is constructed from solid wood. Most striking to the eye is the intricate weaving made from paper twine. The open weave design provides good support and echoes the brand’s history in making tennis rackets, hence, the name “Gemla Open”. The leather parts are derived from Swedish natural leather from Tärnsjö Garveri.
Flos — New Talent Arising
It is Italian designer Guglielmo Poletti’s first time dabbling with lighting design and the fruition of his work has paid off. His creation “To-Tie” lamp for Flos is an execution of three elements united by a subtle structural balance — the glass encasement, the bar on which the cable is wound, and the critical cable that joins the cylinder to the bar via tensioning. The very thin tensioned cable supplies power to the lamp while the bar not only blocks the glass encasement thanks to the knotted cable, it also holds the LED light source.
This also serves as a handle to move the light around. Poletti has worked with renowned designers such as Gordon Guillaumier who is artistic director at Desalto. To-Tie was a slow cooking project developed during the time of worldwide lockdowns and Poletti’s idea of using tension cables has clearly materialised into a tangible, purposeful lighting object.
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