At Milan Design Week 2017, expect exceptional installations, collaborations between design visionaries and the return of designers to Milan exhibiting their work. With an abundance of work to choose from, here are my top highlights…

Aquazzura X De Gournay - Showcased at Aquazzura for Milan Design Week 2017

Aquazzura X De Gournay – Showcased at Aquazzura for Milan Design Week 2017

Luxury footwear brand Aquazzura and icons of hand-painted wallpaper, De Gournay collaborated to create a vibrant installation with a soft tropical vibe at the Aquazzura showroom in Milan. The wallpaper – which combines Aquazzura’s signature colourful aesthetic with De Gournay’s unique chinnoisery  technique – was paired with emerald green upholstery and a statement striped rug. The scheme was contemporary, yet feminine and perfectly balanced.

Aquazzura X De Gournay - Showcased at Aquazzura for Milan Design Week 2017

Aquazzura X De Gournay – Showcased at Aquazzura for Milan Design Week 2017

  • Lee Broom’s Time Capsule Machine at Ventura Centrale

Lee Broom hosted a retrospective at the historic and previously abandoned Ventura Centrale train station. The designer had re-imagined an iconic piece from each of his 10 years in design in a new finish and colour and placed them on a minimalist carousel, for maximum impact.

'Time Machine' by Lee Broom at the Ventura Centrale for Milan Design Week 2017

‘Time Machine’ by Lee Broom at the Ventura Centrale for Milan Design Week 2017

'Time Machine' by Lee Broom at the Ventura Centrale for Milan Design Week 2017

‘Time Machine’ by Lee Broom at the Ventura Centrale for Milan Design Week 2017

  • Wittmann x Hayon Workshop 

 Spanish artist-designer Jaime Hayon, and the Austrian furniture manufacturer, Wittmann recently collaborated to create the Wittmann Hayon workshop – I loved the eclectic variety of colours, shapes, and the range of materials used.  

Wittman X Hayon Workshop at Salone del Mobile 2017

Wittman X Hayon Workshop at Salone del Mobile 2017

Wittman x Hayon Workshop at Salone del Mobile 2017

Wittman x Hayon Workshop at Salone del Mobile 2017

  • Paola Lenti Showroom

Paola Lenti‘s latest collection was created with the relationship between outdoor and indoor in mind. At Milan, we saw more and more brands blurring these lines. Flexible, transitional pieces were shown both indoor and out while the venue – the Fabrica Orobia – offered a backdrop of high ceilings, man-made materials as well as the perfect palette in which to display the newly released indoor and outdoor fabrics.

Paola Lenti at the Fabrica Orobia, Milan Design Week 2017

Paola Lenti at the Fabrica Orobia, Milan Design Week 2017

Paola Lenti at the Fabrica Orobia, Milan Design Week 2017

Paola Lenti at the Fabrica Orobia, Milan Design Week 2017

  • Gio Pagani Atelier

At this year’s Milan Design Week, my team and I were taken on what felt like a journey at Gio Pagani‘s showroom in the Brera Design District. From expert colour blocking, unique combinations of materials, fabulous upholstery and lacquered finishes, this was definitely a must see for 2017!

Maison Gio Pagani presents the 'Senza Fine' capsule collection at Milan Design Week 2017

Maison Gio Pagani presents the ‘Senza Fine’ capsule collection at Milan Design Week 2017

I was especially impressed by the wide-ranging vocabulary of colour that was used throughout the atelier – petrol, lemon, mint, flame red, powder pink, coffee and many more. The emphasis on colour was also brought through in the back-painted glass, lacquered wood and Gio Pagani’s unique range of paint. The energy of the Gio Pagani colour palette made each room vibrate with a distinctive personality.

The Gio Pagani Showroom in the Brera District, Milan.

The Gio Pagani Showroom in the Brera District, Milan.

Milan Design Week 2017 also marked the brand’s fist exploration into the realm of interior lighting and presented their first collection of light fittings. The Maison has designed two capsule collections: Illogica Allegria and Eclat d’Eau, each consisting of a pendant light and a floor lamp in a single or group of three versions. Both are also available in ceiling, wall and table versions.

'Illogica Allegria' by Gio Pagani at Milan Design Week 2017

‘Illogica Allegria’ by Gio Pagani at Milan Design Week 2017

  • Marni’s Playground

Marni’s ‘Playground’ – recreated a scene of summertime relaxation with twists of Latin fever. The vast space was strewn with colourful toys and outdoor chairs made by Colombian crafts women. Most of the pieces were made up of PVC – showcasing how this conventional material can be transformed into something unexpected.

Marni's Playground - A Scene of Summertime at Milan Design Week 2017

Marni’s Playground – A Scene of Summertime at Milan Design Week 2017

  • Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades at Palazzo Boconni 

The Objet Nomades collection was created in 2012 with the aim of showcasing Louis Vuitton’s connection with beautifully crafted travel objet. Renowned international designers – The Campana Brothers, Marcel Wanders and Atelier Oi have all designed for this collection with my personal favourites being the Spiral Lamp by Atelier Oi and the Cocoon hanging day chair by the Campana Brothers. Another must see…

The 'Spiral Lamp' by Atelier Oï for Louis Vuitton

The ‘Spiral Lamp’ by Atelier Oï for Louis Vuitton

'Cocoon' by the Campana Brothers

‘Cocoon’ by the Campana Brothers

  • Arturo Alvarez ‘Emotional Lighting’

This year’s Euroluce (the lighting exhibition which , each year takes place as part of Salone) had much to offer with exceptional exhibitions from Flos and Contardi, to name just a couple. I was especially impressed with Arturo Alvarez’s ‘Emotional Lighting’ collection, which included the ‘Conversas’ design – human faces shaped from steel chain mail and suspended from the ceiling. When light is projected onto the metal shape, full faces appear as though they are engaged in an intimate conversation…

'Conversas' by Alturo Alvarez at Euroluce, Salone del Mobile 2017

‘Conversas’ by Arturo Alvarez at Euroluce, Salone del Mobile 2017

'Conversas' designed by Arturo Álvarez

‘Conversas’ designed by Arturo Álvarez

  • Stone Age Folk Exhibition by Jaime Hayon

Quartz manufacturer, Caesarstone, collaborated with renowned designer, Jaime Hayón to create seven pieces which use stone marquetry and explored themes of folklore while also showing the flexibility of caesarstone as a surface.

Caesarstone's Stone Age Folk by Jaime Hayon (Image Credit - Tom Mannion)

Caesarstone’s Stone Age Folk by Jaime Hayon (Image Credit – Tom Mannion)

  • The Invisible Collection x Marc Ange x Green Gallery

To celebrate Marc Ange joining The Invisible Collection, the Imaginary World of Marc Ange featuring a collaboration between The Green Gallery and Marc Ange was presented – an oasis of floral beauty, and representing a form of shelter from the sun. I loved the retro design of the space, very LA Confidential…

The Invisible Collection Presents the Imaginary World of Marc Ange in collaboration with The Green Gallery at Milan Design Week 2017

The Invisible Collection Presents the Imaginary World of Marc Ange in collaboration with The Green Gallery at Milan Design Week 2017

Next up, I will be doing a brand report from Milan Design Week 2017 – looking at our Top 10 brands, new and old, with special attention to the collections that were launched during Milan…

Ciao!

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