April 26, 2016
Kartell is presenting a stand at Salone del Mobile 2016 that interpret the company’s philosophy – representing different ways of thinking and planning – with stories told by the voices of the stars of this Salone del Mobile themselves. The display has 11 micro-environments, each one dedicated to a specific designer and Coveted team made a tour through all the stand with the CEO Claudio Luti.
Antonio Citterio, Ferruccio Laviani, Piero Lissoni, Alberto Meda, Alessandro Mendini, Fabio Novembre, Eugeni Quitllet, Philippe Starck, Patricia Urquiola, Tokujin Yoshioka are the great team of designers that Kartell get together for this edition of Salone del Mobile. Kartell is also presenting the new Kartell Kids line. Within each “room” the very latest products will be on show accompanied by the voices of those who designed them, Kartell’s “talking minds”.
An immersion in the creative minds that together bring Kartell’s innovative designs to life is the experience that Kartell wishes to offer visitors to this year’s Salone del Mobile.
Kartell is a tribute to diversity and the exchange of ideas, with a catalogue that encompasses everything from furniture to lighting, tables, fragrances, soft furnishings, bathware and even fashion accessories, as well as a new kids’ line. Thanks to its collaborations with leading designers from all over the world, each Kartell product exudes the brand’s DNA while at the same time clearly reflecting the designer’s creativity.
The stand at this year’s Salone aims to present the latest products as a journey through the “talking minds” of the creators who helped make Kartell’s modern vision of living tangible and concrete through their products. Getting back to basics, to deep thought, to brewing up design projects.
I’ve been working with Kartell since 1990. When you collaborate with a company like Kartell, in reality you never stop planning because some projects have a very long development period, such as the Organic Chair (a new step towards sustainable and high-quality industrial design) and the Multiplo tables system (a comple-tely multipurpose product) that I began working on more than two years ago. The product’s design is the same as its strategy: for both projects we wanted to achieve a “timeless” result without limiting its horizons.
After years of collaboration with Kartell I’m always amazed to see how exciting it is to work with plastic, capable of a versatility and expressiveness we designers have to discover and interpret. If I think this is the same material with which Anna Castelli Ferrieri has designed her Componibili and the same material we are using today to produce my Kabuki lamp, I realize how many technological and formal opportunities this material still has to reveal in the form of inspiring new objects for people to fall in love with.
Kartell is highly specialised when it comes to changing scale. The concept of changing scale is not simply about moving from big to small or vice versa. It is about the versatility of offering a vast range of objects, from the everyday essentials (seats, stools, sofas, furniture) to collections of tableware, shoes, bags, and even toys. This year I found myself working on projects that were completely different to one another, from a system of sofas (Largo), to a hyper-technological, industrial and incredibly lightweight chair (Piuma), a line of jugs and glasses (Tynn), and a new idea for Kartell Kids.
Alberto and Francesco Meda
When Kartell suggested the idea of a technical lamp and desk, we immediately un-derstood that it could prove an incredibly demanding project for both the company and ourselves, in the sense that it was very stimulating. A challenge. Having to deal with plastics, and the issue of having a structure that needs to be balanced in order to work well, required in-depth research that led to an innovative design for the Kartell collection whose concept was functional yet decorative at the same time.
Kartell’s attitude towards interpreting and using plastics is unconventional and almost miracu-lous: it manages to make objects “self-luminous”. It is a kind of sense of luxury made available to the masses. This is incredibly valuable. I made this Chinese-style stool, the traditional ceramic Chinese stool, featuring a pattern in homage to Roy Lichtenstein with the dots from his paintings.
Ever since I was a student I have been taught to design for others but this time I failed: this lamp is for me. Towards the middle of my life I too became lost and felt the need for an object that would light the way. A lantern, just like the old-fashioned ones: simple, long-lasting and sturdy.
This is the fruit of the most sophisticated technology and the most poetic and refined aesthetics. We worked with Kartell to design a chair that defied the laws of gravity, was a marvel of beauty, and incorporated the most cutting-edge industrial processes. The results is the Dream’Air. This graceful yet technological chair is a new way of looking at design, that is both ultra-modern and timeless.
“Generics” are things that we no longer see because they have become hidden or so integrated into our lives, our culture, that we have almost forgotten they exist. We need things that no longer speak, in other words, things that exist, nothing more. Being, being, and no longer speaking. But also a bit of comfort and a bit of tenderness.