10 Brilliant Breakthrough Designs From Milan Design Week '09

Milan Design Week 09 starts Wednesday, and from what I've seen of the preview coverage, designers are not napping during the global recession.  The Milan international design show is likely to be the one that blows away the others; there are so many brilliant breakthroughs in concepts, materials, and forms that will be making their debut.  These 10 simply spectacular designs will make you want to hop a plane to Milan right now!  See the paths being formed by some of  the world's leading designers.


1. The Revolving Chandelier, Betijan Pot, The Netherlands

Decrying the demise of the halogen bulb, Betijan Pot designed this triple-bulbed chandelier that spins four light shades on the power of air, heated by three halogen bulbs.  The effects are mesmerizing, as you'll see in the short video.







2. "Smash" by Nendo,  Designed For Tokyo Fiber '09 Senseware

The '09 Senseware exhibit by Tokyo Fiber is a  peak at what happens when the newest technologies meet the newest materials in the land of possibilities. Senseware will stimulate many senses, but as Tokyo Fiber says, it hopes the 'viewer will sense a very real excitement for the future." 



The design house Nendo created Smash like the traditional Japanese chochin paper lanterns. But Smash pieces are made from a long-fiber non-women polyester that can be shaped through hot pressing.  In fact it can be blown and shaped like glass, and used to make a multitude of forms.





3.  "Tuyomyo" Bench by Frank Gehry for Emeco, U.S.

Not the first  chair Frank Gehry created with Emeco, "the aluminum chair maker," Tuyomyo (yours and mine),  Isn't this a magnificent sculptural work? Made from 80 percent recycled aluminum with aircraft manufacturing technology, Mr. Gehry's simple request to Emeco was, 'the form has to be free and light.it must be structural and at the same time poetic.and a little dangerous.'

The 10 foot bench weighs about 122 pounds.  Mr. Gehry and Emeco will auction the bench at the end of the year and donate the proceeds to the Hereditary Disease Foundation in honor of Gehry's daughter Leslie Gehry Brenner.





4.  "O-Re-Gami" By Matali Crasset & "Vimono" By Setsu & Shinobu Ito for Regenesi, Milan

The O-Re-Gami series is an elegant collection of folded baskets made of recycled leather, well-crafted and very delicate looking. 




Also made of regenerated leather, the Vimono is "the first kimono for a bottle of wine." Designed very stylishly by Setsu & Shinobu Ito, the Vimono behaves as a wine cooler, not just a pretty dress that easy to wrap and unwrap.  These designs are now for sale at Regenesi.




5.  "Flower Fume" by Pierre Paulin for Magis, Italy

French design icon, Pierre Paulin, created this brilliant Flower Fume and gave it the perfect name for this delicately woven fabric chair. Simply exquisite. 





6. "Prickly Pair Chairs" by Valentina Glez Wohlers at Designersblock

Mexican-born Valentina Glez Wohlers creates the prickliest chair redolent of her country... the spiny cactus... and pairs it with a traditional European design.  The colors?  Definitely Latin American!   (photos from DesignBoom)






7.  "Slow White" by Bo Reudler with Tuttobene,The Netherlands

Historically, chair, table, and cabinet legs were created from the actual shapes of wood.  Here Bo Reudler carefully selects fallen tree branches and re-purposes them for furniture legs.  An eerily fun furniture line, Slow White is a limited edition series.





8.  "Carpet Hunting" by Design Students At Head - Geneva University for Kramis Teppich Design

These 'table carpets' were designed as a class projects at Head - Geneva University of Art and Design and they are available in limited edition, produced by Kramis Teppich.  The students involved in the projects came from several different design specialties. Look at this very dramatic photo taken by Olivier Pasqual.


Photo: Olivier PasqualPhoto: Olivier Pasqual


Photo © Dorothee BaumannPhoto © Dorothee Baumann



9. "Koncord" Stool by Karim Rashid for Slide

Several new designs from Karim Rashid will debut at Milan Design Week '09.  These brilliantly colored Koncord stools have such a unique design, like a cantilever stool!  The balance Rashid achieves is ingenious, as is the cool footrest.  The Koncords are smashing in the bar setting below, whiere Rashid is expected to DJ on the 23rd (from DesignBoom: open party - light notes:
karim will dj on thursday 23rd april 8pm - 12 pm at the discoteque 'old fashion'
in via alemagna 6
.)  A great addition to the Slide collection.







10. "Seeyou" Gravestone by Akos Mauros Klimes, Peter Kucsera, & Ivanka for Ivanka, Budapest

The collaboration of Klimes and Kucsera with Ivanka, the Hungarian designer working primarily in concrete, brings a product to the fore that's seldom seen in the design show format. But this simple, elegant, and organically interactive design brings great dignity and style to a typically "morbid" design field.  The simple, sculptured, gently-curved cross allows for earthy elements to interact with and become part of the design. 


Photo: Zsolt BatárPhoto: Zsolt Batár


Photo: Katalin IvankaPhoto: Katalin Ivanka


 Photo: Ákos Maurer KlimesPhoto: Ákos Maurer Klimes


Photo: Ákos Maurer KlimesPhoto: Ákos Maurer Klimes


Photo: Katalin IvankaPhoto: Katalin Ivanka


Just think... these are only 10 of the hundreds of new designs opening in Milan this week at Milan Design Week '09.  Stay tuned; I'll be catching more stars for you as the week goes on.


Sources: Bo Reudler, DesignBoom, Emeco, Head - Geneva University of Art and Design, Ivanka, Karim Rashid, Nendo, Pierre Paulin, Regenesi, Slide, Tokyo Fiber via DesignBoom.