Salone del Mobile 2022: the 12 best installations of Milan Design Week

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Milan Design Week is back in force. After a year off and a scaled-down September release, creatives are back in droves for Salone del Mobile 2022, arguably the industry’s biggest event of the year. (Even Martha Stewart made the trip!) With too many events and cocktail parties to count, one design insider whispered to us, “There’s actually a big drama going on with glass rentals right now in Milan. Not surprising at all.

In keeping with a busy schedule, we traveled the city, from the Salone del Mobile furniture show, which included 2,100 exhibitors spread across 20 halls at the Rho Fiera, to a series of installations and debuts across the city.

Here we’ve selected the best installations we’ve seen this week, from Sabine Marcelis’ giant pink marble bathtub in the crumbling wards of a former military hospital in Alcova, to regular favorites from fashion brands like Loewe, Hermès and Louis Vuitton, young talents not to be missed at the show. Still, if there’s anything we’ve noticed catching up with friends and colleagues late at night at Bar Basso, it’s that post-pandemic people aren’t as eager to fill their schedules. to the brim. As one industry friend put it, “Milan these days is more about seeing people than products.”

Duyi Han’s creations at Alcova.

Photo: Mattia Parodi

Experimental furniture organized by Aditions and Hello Human in Alcova.

Photo: Jonathan Hoklo

Alcova

Alcova, the unmissable survey of boundary-pushing design (curated by Valentina Ciuffi of Studio Vedèt and Joseph Grima of Space Caviar) was back at the Ospedale Militare di Baggio, the magnificent crumbling military hospital on the outskirts of Milan . (PRO tip: It’s right next to Metro Line 1, on Chemin de la Fiera, if you’re trying to squeeze it into your schedule.) A sea of ​​delightfully irreverent newcomers are dotted here. big names, making it a design cross section of the moment, all in a highly Instagrammable setting. Highlights included new works by Chinese talent Duyi Han; a room filled with experimental furniture from American designers, curated by Additions and Hello Human; a monumental bathtub in pink onyx by Sabine Marcelis and OMA; and a suite of futuristic designs by Athens-based Objects of Common Interest. “We like the idea of ​​introducing new works here. Space is super cool and interesting for us,” says Eleni Petaloti, co-founder of Objects of Common Interest. Pointing to the weathered walls behind her work, she explains, “We love imperfections. The trace of the rain in the walls. It’s nice.”

Satellite lounge.

Photo courtesy Salone del Mobile.Milano

Satellite Lounge

Salone Satellite, a hub for emerging designers under 35, in pavilions one and three of the fairgrounds, is a must-see. This year, some 600 exhibitors presented work around the theme “Designing for Our Future Selves” with a focus on sustainability. Stand highlights included ethereal resin works by South Korean design firm Studio Yula, a survey of young Belgian talent called Belgium is Design and an ambitious new work by rising Lagos star Studio Lani, the one of five exhibitors to receive the Salone Satellite award for a sculptural walker, wrapped in water hyacinth and aso oke fabric, which she designed with her grandfather in mind. “It was inspired by my 85-year-old grandfather, who found it very daunting to use the traditional walker we bought him,” she explains. “The RemX Walker exudes dignity and strength, designed to empower and elevate the user.”


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