What will the living spaces of the future be like? This is the key question that emerges among the stands at Salone del Mobile Milano 2018, addressed by architects’ installations and events at Fuorisalone, from which a number of key themes emerge, such as solutions for addressing climate change, a focus on nature and sustainability, use of new digital technologies, and the design of multifunctional spaces responding to the needs of an increasingly connected society.
In the iDD Innovation Design District, the area between Porta Nuova and Porta Volta became a symbol of a forward-looking city. Stefano Boeri Architetti held an exhibition in the underground spaces of The Mall entitled “the Future of Living and the Planet of the Future”, in which the studio invited a number of important companies to work on an abstract idea: living on Mars. SapienStone, an Iris Ceramica Group brand that makes top-quality porcelain kitchen countertops, was one of the companies that responded to the Milanese studio’s invitation.
The intention was to test the ability of interior design to anticipate the future. The underground exhibition route in The Mall becomes a voyage in a spaceship where visitors find themselves immersed in an imaginary science fiction setting featuring video installations by Davide Rapp and Giorgio Zangrandi inspired by the Red Planet. In this fluid, creative scenario, SapienStone presents an innovative product born out of its partnership with the Spanish company TPB Top Porzelanik Barcelona®. “It’s a kitchen countertop you can cook, eat and work on, designed for today’s lifestyle which combines different spaces and functions, even in the kitchen,” is how Javier Guardiola, SapienStone Sales Manager, presents the innovative kitchen countertop. The Iris Ceramica Group’s SapienStone countertop is a multipurpose surface with a built-in cooking area: an advanced solution combining design, the industrial atmospheres created by the colours and rusted metal look of the SapienStone Malm Grey countertop, and the technology of new generation induction cookers with touch controls developed by TPB Top Porzelanik Barcelona®. In line with the trends emerging in the spaces the Salone del Mobile set aside for the biannual exhibition EuroCucina / FTK (Technology For the Kitchen), SapienStone presents a vision of the kitchen of the future as a multifunctional, professional place which nonetheless retains its emotional qualities as the fulcrum of the home.
Projected into the future but tied to respect for the environment around us and the need to protect it by implementing sustainable practices, Fuorisalone reserves a very important role for nature.
“Nature will never cease to amaze us, and humans will never stop imitating it and expressing it in their emotions”, underlines architect Marco Porpora of Marco Porpora Architetti, at Corso Garibaldi 2, in the heart of the Brera Design District, which designed the Carrara Causeway installation for Ariostea, an Iris Ceramica Group brand. The installation ideally combines two very different landscapes, the marble quarries of Carrara and the Giant's Causeway in Ireland, to underline the technical and material qualities of Ariostea’s porcelain slabs.
Living in the future and its ties with nature and sustainability is the subject of the “Living Nature. La Natura dell’Abitare” pavilion designed by Carlo Ratti Associati in Piazza del Duomo. The pavilion contains a garden where a climate control system recreates all four seasons at the same time and is the principal venue for the Salone del Mobile in the city centre. The installation addresses such urgent issues as climate change, looking at how we can intervene to control it and mitigate its effects. A project in line with the growing focus on nature in the city, which has led to the development of ground-breaking projects in Milan such as Stefano Boeri’s Bosco Verticale. In the garden designed by Carlo Ratti Associati, nature and domestic spaces create familiar-looking rooms and spaces decorated according to a number of themes, offering visitors examples and answers to the question of how we can bring nature into our cities and our homes.
“Living Nature. La Natura dell’Abitare”
Design: CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati per Salone del Mobile Milano
Location: Piazza del Duomo, Milano
Images: CRA Graphic team: Gary di Silvio, Gianluca Zimbardi