COLOGNE – Every odd-numbered year at IMM Cologne, LivingKitchen spotlights ideas and innovations from the international kitchen industry. This year for the first time ever, St-W curated an exhibition there that explored the future of food production and consumption.
While St-W’s KitchenLab showcased the innovative work of 14 Dutch designers, elsewhere in the hall were further items of interest. Here are some of the more noteworthy commercially available products that not only answer current needs and trends, but also look to securing a place for themselves in the kitchens of the future.
Everything in the Kitchen Sink
Working with Stuttgart-based Phoenix Design studio, Hansgrohe created a kitchen sink with built-in mixer and intuitive controls for technical adjustments and hands-free washing. Hansgrohe separated the water control unit from the tap, placing it on the side of the sink rim for convenient access by all users – regardless of age, height, and physical ability.
Meanwhile, Dornbracht brings professional capability to the household kitchen with their Estate line of sinks. Through this collaboration with Sieger Design, the Estate line invokes innovative functionality and striking design.
Further re-establishing the sink area as the control centre of the kitchen, Grohe’s Essence Professional and Concetto Professional dual-spray taps provide complete control with a flexible silicone hose, a spring arm that swivels 360 degrees, and two spray functions.
Collaborating with French designer Philippe Starck, Gorenje created an extravagant collection of kitchen appliances that heat or chill food on gleaming stainless steel or behind reflective glass surfaces. The minimalist built-in ovens, microwaves, induction cookers, and fridge-freezer combinations of Gorenje by Starck represent two product philosophies merging in an inspiring and surprising collection.
On the other hand, Gaggenau shines a light on one of the unsung heroes of kitchen functionality: the range hood. The clean aesthetic lines of the ventilation 200 series masks powerful ventilation technology that extracts all cooking vapours while maintaining a quieter kitchen environment. The sleek range hood also provides the chef with a choice of ambient lighting hues and dimmable options.
The Talking Hob and Hood
Share your dinner plans with the Siemens iQ700 induction hobs and the cookConnect system will automatically manage temperature and adjust the hood as the food cooks. All the functions of the hob can be controlled via smartphone or tablet, or automated according to a recipe selected from the app.
Bringing Bureaux Back (to the Kitchen)
Inspired by the vintage writing desks which kept the secrets and personal objects of the user, the Genius Loci wall arrangements and kitchen islands by Valcucine conceal useful, intimate storage space behind refined tactile surfaces. Featuring rounded doors and worktop edges for safety and ease of cleaning, customizable drawers and slim and dematerialized tops, the islands and wall arrangements are the result of careful study of how kitchens function as the hub of the home around which the user’s life revolves.
The Colours of Le Corbusier
Utilizing restrained yet intense colours from red ochre to English green to iron grey, Leicht has adopted Le Corbusier to create a palette of holistic kitchen design concepts under the Les Couleurs® name.
Beyond the Box
Nobilia unveiled the new Smartcube shelving system, which can be turned into floating wall shelves, cabinet compartments or base units in a kitchen island. The flexible installations invite creativity in storage and display.
Nature meets technological innovation with Florim Ceramiche’s new porcelain stoneware, which combines the appearance of highly-prized stone with the performance of porcelain. The slabs of Florim Stone consist of a natural mixture of ceramic clays and mineral colours that make them unalterable over time, resistant to stains or scratches, and easy to clean. Florim Stone turns the aesthetic appeal of stone over to endless functional applications.