Milan 2013: Top Ten Installations

Quiet Motion by Bouroullecs for BMWi.

1 Quiet Motion for BMWi by the Bouroullecs

This set of gently turning carousels gave visitors a moment of peace and serenity during Milan Design Week. Each carousel was on a platform of cork, dressed with blue strips of textile and the designers’ Aim lamps for FLOS. Powered by electric motors, the carousels were designed to show how quietly BMW’s electric cars can run; and also showcase some of the materials used for the car’s interior.

2 Amazing Flow by Akihisa Hirata for Lexus

Hirata’s dramatically-lit twisting installation for Lexus looked frankly terrifying in the dark space of the Museo della Permanente. Tendons of  bent wood strips were designed to represent the “flow” of the future city; of people, cars and of natural elements too.

3 Infuse for Kaneka

Architect Chikara Ohno, lighting designer Izumi Okayasu and textile designer Yoko Ando teamed up to create this small but interesting installation for Kaneka at Superstudio Piu. A low ceiling was dressed with  sheer fabric panels that diffused light from a field of colour-changing OLED lights.

4 Seme/Seed by Attilio Stocchi for Foscarini

Attilio Stocchi’s faceted metal beast for Foscarini was the showpiece for the Italian lighting brand’s new spot in Brera. Seme/Seed takes up most of the small showroom; its 15-metre high metal body and 142 faces are anchored in a field of metal poles. Stocchi’s design represents the blooming of a flower from seed. Triangular openings emitted light and colour in time to cello music.

5 What A Wonderful World by François Confino for Samsung

Visitors were handed a Samsung smartphone on entering this interactive world of illusions. Waving the phone at screens depicting a collage of natural and playful themes, would make various features pop out or move, much to people’s delight.

6 Twin’Z by Ross Lovegrove for Renault

Not technically an installation, but Lovegrove´s concept car  obviously aimed for the same wow factor as the bigger designs in Milan. With an interior of swirling fluorescent yellow bands, bright green alloys and colourful LED pattern detailing on the outside; this car has all the energy of a little nightclub on wheels.

7 The Revolving Room by Patricia Urquiola for Kvadrat and Moroso

A table laid with fresh flowers and exotic food was the centrepiece of Patricia Urquiola’s installation at the Moroso showroom. A series of panels around the outside of the room revolved to reveal different patterns and colours.

8 Fluidic by WHITEvoid for Hyundai Design Centre

A cloud constellation of white balls suspended above a pool of shallow water, was periodically brought to life with lights and lasers in this installation by WHITEvoid at Superstudio Piu. Again, the delight of this installation was the interactive element; using 3D camera tracking systems, the installation could detect the presence of the visitors, providing personal interactions between the work and the observer.

9 Project: Office for Living by Jean Nouvel

At SaloneUfficio, Jean Nouvel brought together a series of rooms that explored a looser, more human attitude to designing workspaces. The immaculately conceived and styled room sets were introduced by four films discussing the workplace with Agnès B, photographer Elliot Erwitt, artist Michelangelo Pistoletto and writer and film director Alain Fleischer.

10 Stone Garden by Nendo for Caesarstone

Nendo was everywhere this year; with the prolific Japanese studio’s name appearing all over the city at events and in listings. This installation of overlapping tables in Brera was to do with support, each table has only one leg and can only stand in combination with others. Scaled up to fill the courtyard, the array of tables took on the appearance of a carpeted surface or meadow of flowers.

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