During the biggest design event of the year, Milan Design Week, the most famous names in design, fashion, art industry, raised the bar of the city-art experience with controversial yet captivating collaborations and contemporary installations.
We selected the best 20 list of best of design collaborations, art installations, galleries exhibitions during the thrilling and eventful week in Milan.
COS is working alongside American artist Phillip K Smith III to create a large-scale outdoor installation that was installed at the 16th century Palazzo Isimbardi. Set in the courtyard, the structure will be made up a series of reflective works that are intended to “pull the sky to the ground”, offering visitors a serene place to relax.
The Diner by David Rockwell
New York architect David Rockwell collaborated with Surface magazine to create The Diner, space where American design will be celebrated in a setting based on an “archetypal roadside restaurant”.
Dimore Studio is curating three separate events for Fuorisaloni. The first, Dimore Gallery, presented an installation of iconic 20th-century design. Also here, the studio showcased its latest pieces from the collections Progetto Non Finito and Oggetti collections. Lastly, an installation named Limited Edition, six shop front windows filled with items from the late 1800s and early 1900s
Fondazione Prada by OMA
The OMA-designed Fondazione Prada was one of the most visited spots in Milan last week, as it unveiled a new nine-story tower filled with modern art and contemporary design. Highlights include the Upside-Down Mushroom Room by Belgian artist Carsten Höller, which featured giant red and white rotating mushrooms sprouting from the ceiling.
Altered States by Snarkitecture and Caesarston
New York studio Snarkitecture teamed up with quartz manufacturer Caesarstone to create this installation exploring the changing forms of water. The installation presented materials in the forms of river, glacier, ice, liquid, and steam.
Hay x Sonos x WeWork
Milan’s Palazzo Clerici created a dramatic backdrop for an exhibition by Danish design brand Hay, co-working and office company WeWork, and sound specialist Sonos. The contemporary furniture, set against the historic building’s ornate interiors, was very popular.
Breath/Ing sculpture by Kengo Kuma
Kengo Kuma presents a giant spiraling air-purifying sculpture with the capability to absorb the emissions of 90,000 cars per year. Titled “breath/ing”, comprises 120 hand-folded panels and is a towering 6 meters tall.
Foscarini x James Wines
“The light bulb series” designed in collaboration between Foscarini and James wines/site, is the center piece of the installation “reverse room”. An reversed and angled ”black box” that disturbs spatial perception and experiments our reactions to the setting .
This year’s concept for Milan Design Week, it’s from Charlotte Macaux Perelman, deputy artistic director of the French luxury brand, was a dazzling color-blocked environment at the Museo della Permanente. Create a sense intimacy to a new collection of furniture, tabletop, and textiles, with structures within the museum that were clad in 150,000 colorful zellige tiles from Morocco.
Objets Nomades by Louis Vuitton
Designers including Patricia Urquiola, Marcel Wanders and Fernando Campana joined forces to present Louis Vuitton’s Objets Nomades homeware collection at Milan design week. A ceiling covered in thousands of red and pink Atelier Oï origami flowers was the most photographed set .
Swarovski redesign a hidden courtyard at Palazzo Serbelloni with a custom-built “greenhouse”, where the brand offers its atelier collections and jewelry for purchase alongside an exhibit of its new home collections by Nendo, Patricia Urquiola, Peter Pilotto and John Pawson. Meanwhile, a pop-up Daniel’s Café serves up Viennese pastries that visitors can nibble on while they browse.
Love Letter to Milan on Garage Traversi by Studio job
Design duo Studio Job revitalize Milan’s historic garage Traversi with a pop art love letter to the city. Painted on the rationalist facade of this landmark building in the Montenapoleone district, “oh oh, Milano..I love you too…” brings together the bold and imaginative visual themes studio job has become widely known for.
Fifth Ring by MAD
“Fifth Ring” is a circular ring set inside a square courtyard, the installation demonstrates mankind’s continued search for perfection and the illuminated circle frames the sky, acting as a “portal to a fifth dimension” in a move which seeks to open up a dialogue between the observer and the infinite universe.
MVRDV and Bulgari
MVRDV collaborates with Bulgari to design an art installation inspired on three elements of design – materials, modularity and color. The immersive space made up of crafted scales invites visitors into the craft of jewelry making.
Bar Anne by Space Encounter
Blowing in the Wind by Missoni x Rachel Hayes
Missoni presents Blowing in the Wind, an environmental art project in Milan, Italy by American artist Rachel Hayes.”A modular, multi-colored textile brought to life by the wind as though it were a parachute or fluttering flag; a gigantic patchwork that spectacularly plays on and amplifies the effects of light and air”.
Observatory by Lee Broom
British furniture designer Lee Broom returns with another new series of fascinating lighting pieces. Titled “Observatory”, the curved, ethereal lights are the first of a three-phase launch that will continue throughout the year.
Peter Pichler’s futuristic installation
Peter Pichler architecture explored the potential of wood with a cave-like installation. The art space pavilion is symmetrical, 1a 2-ton structure made of more than 1600 wood sticks that invite visitors in a playful experience of light and shadow.
Forms of Movement by Nendo
Nendo, the Japanese design studio, explores the idea of movement with a series of designs and sketches in a 800sqm space in Via Tortona. The exhibition is part of design fair Superdesign Show run by media company Superstudio Group.
Tram Corallo by Cristina Celestino
Cristina Celestino transforms a 1928 tram traveling through the Brera Design District into a “‘travelling salon” in collaboration with high-end textiles company Rubelli. An extraordinary project and piece of tailor-made artisan craftsmanship.