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Global Change: biophilic design for nature-inspired flooring.

Global Change is Interface’s most versatile collection to-date, launched during last NeoCon. It was designed by Kari Pei, the company’s Lead Product Designer, and pairing nature-inspired biophilic design with Interface’s modular flooring system expertise. The collection offers architects and designers the ability to bring biophilic flooring into their spaces, leading to more positive experiences and improved wellbeing for the people who use them.

Biophilia is a growing trend in interior design and architecture, but we can not say that the “innate tendency to seek connections with nature and other forms of life” is a novelty indeed. This scientific hypothesis was introduced by Edward O. Wilson in 1984.
Interface has been among the first companies to intercept this philosophy and has been applying biophilic design approach for several years in its textile flooring systems.
Global Change is the last collection by Interface, launched at NeoCon 2017 and offers an integrated range of design options that can be composed to solve a variety of unique business challenges.
The collection evokes foliage through artistic interpretation of tree and leaf shading patterns. Biophilic elements and references are also reflected in random patterns and fluid transitions inspired by natural textures.


Global Change is comprised of seven face styles available in six organic color palettes. Progression 1, 2,3, the collection’s foundational tiles, offer three gradated base textures at three different price points and pile heights.
Glazing and Shading take inspiration from the tree canopy with foliage appearing as positive shapes against striations of texture.
Ground and Raku resemble the cracked appearance of dried earth and can be installed as non-directional squares.
The styles are available in a mixture of 50cm x 50 cm squares and 25cm x 100cm Skinny PlanksTM, ranging from flat to plush. To complement the seven face tiles, the Interface design team developed six earthy, mineral-based colors for the collection, inspired by global trends:
Eclipse, Evening Dusk, Desert Shadow, Fawn, Daylight and Morning Mist.
Global Change has one of the lowest carbon footprints of any of Interface’s global collections to-date. and is in line with Interface’s sustainability commitments.
Global Change takes the end-user on a journey from the forest to the coast, offering beautiful aesthetics that also deliver modular versatility and functionality – Kari Pei quoted – Each product within the collection was designed to harmoniously blend into the next, and the collection has the unique ability to adapt as design and tastes evolve.”

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Neocon: HiP Award to Favaretto and Luxy.

The seating Ribelle –design by Favaretto & Partners– won the Interior Design’s 4th Annual HiP Awards, as Best Product in the category Outdoor at the 49th Neocon in Chicago, while Italia armchair was one of the honorees between the 5 products in nomination for the category Task Seating. 

Ribelle design by Favaretto & Partners (patented # 003661602).

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Make a chair as easy as possible but without simplifying and get out from traditional forms and benefit of ergonomics: this was the ichallenge of Ribelle, the first indoor/outdoor chair of Luxy.
Entirely made in rod steel, the collection is composed of 2 versions: chair and stool. The front angles of the seat are cut to facilitate the end user to get up. The functional advantage of this cut is emphasized in the stool version, where it is possible to put the foot on the floor without moving forward on the seat. Available 13 finishes of which 9 can be used both indoor and outdoor, instead the chrome, brass, copper and carbon finishes are suitable only for indoor use.

Italia, design by Favaretto&Partners (patented # 003164540-0003 – 003164540-0004).

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Italia is a perfect combination of ergonomics and style. It has an exposed metal structure in high-strength steel-rod, available in a chromed or embossed black or white painted version, provides a stylish support to a cold-foamed shell of varying density. The design and technology are completely innovative. It is available in the high or low version with chrome frame or black or white painted. Leathers and fabrics are available in wide range of colors.

 

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Snowsound collects two awards at NeoCon 2017.

On the occasion of the Neocon 49th edition, particularly focused on Italian design, Caimi Brevetti earned once again two Awards: the first Best of Neocon Silver is for the sound-absorbing system Snowsound Diesis, the second one for Snowsound Analysis Software. 

Snowsound was awarded several international recognition mixing innovation with product design. This coexistence of unique aesthetic qualities with outstanding performance greatly contributes to its success.

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The latest Best of Neocon Award won, in “Software/Application for Specifications” category, is a meaningful recognition for the Snowsound Analysis Software thanks to its user friendliness and quickness in estimating the required acoustic material for a given environment.

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Diesis, designed by Alessandro and Francesco Mendini, is a system of sound-absorbing Snowsound-Fiber drapes, realized with soft interwoven polyester fibers that are inherently fire-resistant and supported by a steel structure (either free-standing or hanging from the ceiling). The interaction between its special acoustic fibers and its particular shape leads to signification reduction in annoying acoustic reverberation, thus improving acoustic comfort and life quality.
Snowsound products and technologies are covered by exclusive patents that represent the result of intense in progress research and development in collaboration with Universities and Research Institutes.

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Neocon: hub of inspiration for new professional lifestyles.

Neocon at its 49th edition confirmed itself as an amazing hub of inspiration for solutions and trends: workplace design is becoming essential for attracting and retaining workers of the Gig economy, Millennials and Generation Z, new faces of this modern work style dominated by the “sharing culture”. Pleasant, warm and healthy interiors answer to the new co-officing, co-creation and collaboration norms.

Adaptive furnishings, privacy on demand, acoustic comfort and sound control, biophilic design and new technology for wireless charging device and immersive visualization experiences are inspiring the new workspace design.
Versatile, modular, reconfigurable, multi-use, highly adjustable products offer flexible and dynamic solutions enable the maximization of different workspace settings: from privacy when desired for one or two users, to collaborative work sessions or impromptu meeting areas.
Lighting, wall partitions, desking and seating, all the components can be reconfigured time and again offering virtually endless configuration options for inspiring and supporting the work, from formal to casual. Serpentine shapes, straight models, transitional units are the new geometries.

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Floors, wall partitions, products in general are incorporating natural materials, nature views and other experiences of the natural world, drawn by the biophilic design trend.

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“The office is unoffice
is the evocative proposal by West Elm, an home furniture brand based in New York expanding innovatively in the workplace solutions.
Neocon always deserves the trip especially this year with the celebration for 100 years of Florence Knoll, legendary and visionary designer, former President of Knoll and founder of KnollTextiles, and the master lecture from Antonio Citterio at the MCA in Chicago, considered one of the most important appointments in the Windy City, together with his month-long retrospective hosted at Luminaire.
Looking forward to see what the 50th Edition will be, it is better to book the trip on time!

Text by Silvia Fattore.


1. West Elm, Haus, design by Qdesign.

A private workstation, inspired by traditional architecture and first-class airline cabins, designed for individual and small group work. Clustered together, the three Haus configurations transform an open office into a dynamic village, a creative community landscape.

2. Buzzispace, BuzziPleat, design by 13&9Design.
Vnner of Best of Neocon 2017 Gold.
Category: Acoustic Panel & Solutions.
BuzziPleat reinterprets ancient techniques used in fashion design, like smocking and pleating, to create large-scale, yet lightweight sculptural forms, made of sound-absorbing BuzziFelt. It combines the hanging acoustic pendants with a light source to marry sound control and illumination in one multi-purpose product.

3. Arper, Parentesit, design by Lievore Altherr Molina.
The bold, graphic forms are available in three shapes a circle, a square or an oval that can be further customized with the addition of a speaker or ambient light, to create a visual element that is as functional as it is modern. The collection is now complemented by the freestanding version, a modular stand alone system for concentration or quiet conversation in shared workspaces or collaborative environments.

4. Fluidconcepts & Design Inc., Orbit, Inline Systems.
Orbit workstations conform to how people actually work by providing single location access to a user’s work area in one continuous ergonomic circumference. They can be complete circular workstations or partial segments. Workstations can be linked in various configurations in snake like configurations, tangents, or as independent pods. Orbit can be specified in multiple diameters, radii and heights. Curved dividers are available in a variety of materials such as laminate, fabric, metal printed and acrylics. Circuit electrical and date system can be specified. The system offers installs extremely fast to create flexible and dynamic workstation environment.

 


5. Steelcase, Surround, design Steelcase Design Studio.
Winner of Best of Neocon 2017 Gold.
Category: Healthcare Guest/ Lounge seating.
A collection of healthcare furnishings designed to support family members in healthcare environments. Surround with 3-seat sleepers, available in 2-seat and 1-seat options supports the family’s dynamic role and involvement, eases their burdens and fosters their wellbeing. Surround supports the activities and moments that matter most from rest and rejuvenation, to productivity, hosting guests and communicating with clinicians.

6. Davis, Q6, design by Jonathan Prestwich.
Winner of Best of Neocon 2017
Innovation. Category: Furniture Collections for Collaboration.
Inspired by how people work today, Jonathan Prestwich has created an all-inclusive line which addresses the need for different kinds of working spaces. Comprised of open seating, screens, benches, tables, and ottomans, Q6 provides a versatile line of stylish and highly functional pieces. 

7. Snowsound USA (Caimi Brevetti), Snowsound Diesis, design by Alessandro Mendini, Francesco Mendini.
Winner of Best of Neocon 2017 Silver. Category: Acoustic Panels & Solutions.
Diesis is a sound-absorbing element with steel base and drapes based on Snowsound-Fiber technology. These pieces feature steel frames at the top that create the sound-absorbing drape, thus assuming precise rays and layers, designed to optimise acoustic performance. Diesis is available in both ceiling mounted or free-standing versions.

8.Interface, Global Change. Design by Kari Pei, Interface Lead Product Designer.
It is the most versatile collection to-date, pairing nature-inspired biophilic design with Interface’s modular flooring system expertise. The collection offers an integrated range of design options that can be composed in a custom-made design. It evokes foliage through artistic interpretation of tree and leaf shading patterns. Biophilic elements and references are also reflected in random patterns and fluid transitions inspired by textures found in nature.

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9.Herman Miller, Prospect, design by Richard Holbrook.
Winner of Best of NeoCon Gold. Category Furniture for Collaboration.
Collaborative and individual creativity in today’s workplaces and learning environments need just the right amount of privacy, Prospect is mission control for individuals and small- to medium-sized teams replete with whiteboards, tackable surfaces, and media display. It’s an ideal place for brainstorming, pinning, and visual thinking that allows people to easily transition between working together and alone.

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Smart working between physical and virtual workspace.

The success of smart working is driving organizations to design different scenarios for work and workplace. A large number of companies welcome smart working while leaving the collaborator the freedom to work in the office or anywhere else. Finally, more and more companies, called “location-independent“, have decided to not have an office and to make their collaborators only work remotely.
The last trend is the online office thanks to software that simulates the physical workspace that still many people feel the need.

Some companies reject smart working by postponing the change at a future time that will sooner or later come. But those companies that decide not to have an office make a bold choice, but it is not without sense. In most cases, it is a shared choice with their collaborators. Recently, Automattic, the company that develops CMS WordPress, has decided to sell its offices in San Francisco: 1400sqm of open space offices with many attractions. The reason for the sale is simple: 5-6 collaborators go to the office, while everyone else prefers to work remotely.

 


Buffer
is another company that after a few years of working in an office has decided to leave it to let its collaborators have the freedom to work where they prefer.
The “location-independent” companies have made their choice an extra reason to invest in corporate culture and create a strong team sense. They also have perks and benefits to capture new talents remotely and keep those that are already present, for example they reimburse those who decide to work in a co-working.
When we talk about working in an office or working remotely, people can be divided into two groups: some prefer to work remotely and gladly give up the office; others need the office as a place of aggregation and relationship that give meaning to the word work.
Millennials and even more the generation Z usually approve remote working and often require it. Previous generations are opening up to smart working thanks to higher quality of life and work.

A new trend: the virtual online office.

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Among these new ways of working and generational incentive there are companies that work in an online office. This means that employees use software that simulates the physical space of an office. For now the spaces are drawn in 2D, but the 3D step is close because companies like Facebook are already integrating Oculus Rift technology.

These softwares have nothing to do with second life or ludic use of virtual spaces.
The purpose of an online office is to recreate the personal proximity and functionality of a physical space that is needed for teams to work together remotely. Teams are co-localized online in an office designed on a visual map with avatars representing people within virtual space.
The rooms and common spaces of this virtual office simulate the kitchen, the space with a relaxing couch, the rooms where you are very focused and do not want to be disturbed. The concept is very similar to the design of the spaces according to their function. The policy of such a space describes how to behave internally.

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My personal experience has improved a long way since I joined Virtual Team Talk, an international co-working space where different professionals meet and work in the space created by the service sococo.com.
In this space it may happen that I am in the “casual” room together with a person and I take the opportunity to know him or her.
Or else I am in the “very focused” room where everyone is very focused and I will not venture to disturb my colleagues. I can go to the “open discussion” room for a remote brainstorming where all the colleagues have the webcam on.
In the “after party” room I can informally get to know my colleagues after work.
With the passing of time the feeling of closeness of your colleagues is undeniable. Working in a remote team often gives the feeling of not knowing what your colleagues are doing: whether they are working on computers or are out for a commission.
Integration with tools that facilitate communication is already advanced. Also with this work mode, people are free to go and come into virtual space by communicating their presence to others.
The global movement of remote workers is growing constantly and an online office can help simulate a physical space that still many people feel the need.
Choosing to adopt smart working so that a collaborator can choose when to work in the office, and when to work remotely, following a clear company policy, it looks even better with the use of an online office.

Text by Giovanni Battista Pozza, Digital Entrepreneur.

Photo Automattic: credit Scott Beale https://www.flickr.com/photos/laughingsquid/ 

Photo Office online: Virtual Team Talk Sococo 

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An urban landscape inside the office.

The project for the GFT Italia Headquarter in Milan by DAP Studio wants to shape a paradox: to design an office for a company who works with the immaterial world of Information Technology, taking inspiration from the greatest material invention of man, the city.
Instead of excluding urban life from the workplace, the interior design transform it into the very paradigm of work experience.

“We designed a working place where human relations and knowledge can move along ‘streets’ and ‘squares’, where people can discuss in cozy lounges or share opinions in front of a long dining table. Thus the open space of an ordinary office building becomes a new urban landscape, the theatre of a new way of understanding work”. explain Elena Sacco and Paolo Danelli of DAP Studio.

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To reflect the non-hierarchical company, the space organization is fluid and facilitates interpersonal relationships and exchange of information.

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The entrance to the office is designed as a threshold area between the “outside world” and the inner new office. Beyond the threshold, an elongated architectural volume, with its highly recognizable shape.

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This iconic element is the fulcrum and the common background for spaces and paths and has a double value.


Its cross-section, with its sloping roof, refers to the archetypal shape of the house and emphasizes an idea of office that hybridizes with the domestic space: an informal place where people use to meet and share their ideas.

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Its longitudinal flow refers to the standard image of the factory, too; with bright and warm color inside and a reflecting metal-like surface that captures the light. The exterior, instead, has a white perforated cladding, a mutable surface thanks to the effect of the filtering inner light and colour.

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This dialectic between material perception and evanescence of shapes is a key to interpreting the project and we can find it also in the contrast between concrete walls and wide glass surfaces, minimal white furniture and strong wooden window frames.
Photo by Barbara Corsico

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Art and Design #withRefugees (June 20th, Refugee Day).

On June 20 celebrates the United Nations’ World Refugee Day to commemorate the strength, courage, and resilience of millions of refugees. Also Art and Design can contribute to raise the public awareness about refugee’s situations throughout the world. Here are some examples.

La Triennale di Milano and Fondazione Nicola Trussardi: The Restless Earth.

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The exhibition, curated by Massimiliano Gioni at Triennale in Milan, explores real and imaginary geographies, reconstructing the odyssey of migrants through personal and collective tales of exodus. Its title from a collection of poems by Édouard Glissant, a Caribbean writer who probed the question of how different cultures can coexist. The exhibition shares in Glissant’s project—a pressing and necessary one that tries to describe this unstable and agitated present as a polyphony of voices and narratives. Through the works of more than sixty artists from more than forty countries—such as Albania, Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Ghana, Iraq, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria, and Turkey—and with historical documents and objects of material culture, this exhibition charts both experiences and perceptions of migration and the current refugee crisis as an epoch-making transformation that is reframing contemporary history, geography, and culture.
The Restless Earth focuses in particular on how artists bear witness to historic events, and how art can describe social and political change in the first person.
(Francis Alÿs in collaboration with Julien Devaux, Felix Blume, Ivan Boccara, Abbas Benheim, Fundaciéon Montenmedio Arte, and children of Tanger and Tarifa / Don’t Cross the Bridge Before You Get to the River, Strait of Gibraltar, 2008 / Courtesy Francis Alÿs and David Zwirner, New York/London).

Moroso supports Achilleas Souras in Milan and Olafur Eliasson at 57th Biennale di Venezia. 

“SOS – Save Our Souls” by Achilleas Souras in Milan.
On the occasion of Salone del Mobile, Moroso hosted in its showroom “SOS Save Our Souls” by Achilleas Souras. This installation of great political-social impact is built around the life jackets discarded by refugees on Greece’s shores. The work fuses social engagement with the practical aim of extending protection from water to land. The young Achilleas is repurposing life jackets that saved refugees on the sea to shelter them on land.

Green light – An artistic workshop by Olafur Eliasson at 57th Venice Biennale Art.

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Green Light – An Artistic Workshop is a project by the Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson in association with Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary of Vienna (TBA21). The project was created in response to the current problems caused by migration and mass displacements. Moroso’s contribution to the project was to develop some of the furnishings in the workshop space. The workshop will be held throughout the period of Viva Arte Viva, the 57th Venice Biennale, from 13 May to 26 November 2017. The geometric Green Light tables and shelves were designed by Eliasson’s studio especially for the workshop and produced by Moroso.
(Photo Credit © Damir Zizic)

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Quiet, please! We work here.

This furniture typology has no name yet: pod? box? booth? acoustic room? Call it what you may. It’s designed to define oases of privacy featuring levels of sound absorption that vary according to need. WOW has selected a few of the most effective systems.

A versatile system coming in several sizes and flexible when fitting, featuring high-performance acoustics, agility in in-use times, expanding over time and designed for the application of ICT technologies: that’s what “personal bubbles” require, a territory which man uses both to leave out his own kind and establish relationships (do you remember the “personal bubble” of Edward T. Hall?)
A dual identity of “shelter” to cut oneself off and not disturb the others, but also of “lodge” suitable for teamwork.
They are free-standing, pre-fab, modular systems to ensure a quick fitting and custom-made solutions. The walls don’t reach the ceiling of the building so a covering is required, however allowing the air-conditioning circulation. The sound insulation is a must.
There are boxy shapes available commercially, but the most advanced systems also provide for curved, blind or glass modules, lending these interior design units the look of a small “Pod” just landed in an open space and already waiting for takeoff.


Estel: Collaborative Room.
They are modular cells available in three different range of dimensions, all highly customizable by structure and finishes. Small (able to accomodate up to 2 people); Medium (suitable for meeting and focus group up to 4 people); Large (a real meeting area able to host up to 8 people). They are built with an aluminium structure, customizable with glass sheet or wooden panels covered up with sound absorbing foam. Entrance module with hinged or sliding door or without a door and a wide range of optional floor finishes. Top feature of this product are the high level of acoustic isolation, efficient air-conditioning and the possibility to customize the electrical system.

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Fantoni: Acoustic Room.
It can be equipped with sound absorbing panels, glazed walls and flooring. Two modules in different sizes (254 x 254 x h254 cm – 254 x 134 x h 254 cm) allow you to create acoustically protected islands. The module is made of 4akustik sound absorbing panels.

 


Universal Selecta: Chakra – The Inner Sound.
Design R&D US with AMA-Albera Monti and Ezio Rendina.
An architectural, prefabricated, modular partition system covered by 5 patents; it is freestanding and requires no anchors on the ceiling nor on the floor. It ensures ideal conditions of customized acoustic comfort and tailor made conditioning air system in any kind of collective environment. From phone booth to large meeting rooms for 12 people. The patented assembly system ensures flexibility, simplicity and speed in the assembly.

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Citterio: Sound System.
Design Franco Mirenzi andVittorio Parigi
CSS is a family of cubicles made of aluminium, glass and wood fibre panels that ranges from phone-booths to medium-sized meeting rooms. Each cubicle is finished with highly-soundproofing patented finishings, flat or pyramid-shaped.

 


Faram: Bubble.
A design oriented space that accomodates an individual and his/her needs. The curvy shapes ease the positioning inside environments. Everything can be customised, upon customer’s request: finishings, chair, top, electrical function, lights, air conditioning, phone and PC charger. The Bubble Meet version accommodates 4 people.

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Orangebox: Air3.
Launched in 2014 and award winning, it is one of the most advanced room system: Interchangeable panels allow you to swap, change and refresh your colours and fabrics anytime. The patented opening room system featuring an advanced fire safety system, it is demountable and therefore can be moved, re-positioned and fully re-used.
There are 17 standard Air3 pods providing a variety of curved, square, small and large private meeting rooms.

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Bespoke furniture: fashion, new aesthetics or a real need?

“Bespoke furniture” used to be for luxury environments only, executive suites or middle-class houses. Then, the “special” alteration was necessary to adapt too rigid systems to the building, or to prevent from slipping into standardization.
Still now that industrial design has accepted the concept of the design of options, the “custom-made” furniture can be found  in coworking settings and turns into “shabby mannerism”. Is it less expensive? Or does everybody want to create their own aesthetics?

The new production systems provide for maximum product customization, yet it’s not uncommon for the major bank groups to rely on the architect for the design of their desks; how can it be that none of the hundreds of products on the market could meet with their requirements?
The beskpoke “virus” also hits the smaller workplace, that aims at a domestic mood (Plantronics, Digital Entity, Clubhouse Brera, for example).
It may be less expensive, but do the standards of quality, ergonomics and strength  match the industrial products, engineered and tested in accordance with the regulations?

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Also, the coworking world is ever-expanding with its “raw design” aesthetics, made of shop tables, chairs found in the attic and the do-it-yourself trend to recycle  the wastes of a consumer society.
However, this vision is becoming a new form of standardization. Its rule-breaking spirit has gone.

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Some companies are also launching this kind of “garage spirit” furniture systems (Hack by Vitra, Pakiet Zieta, PlayWood by OSB) but, in my opinion raw wood and rusty iron are becoming really boring.
Among the “shabby manierism” lovers there is Carlo Ratti that designed the desks and the mobile partitions of Talent Garden Calabiana Coworking;

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while another coworking, Cowo, created a project team to design his own “perfect desk”.
I can’t come to a conclusion, I have no answers, I’ll just wait for remarks and different opinions.
Editorial by Renata Sias, editor WOW! Webmagazine

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From Smart Working to Smart Living.

BTicino, a brand of Legrand Group, commissioned a survey to Ipsos and Osservatorio Internet of Things of Politecnico di Milano. The study investigates the Italians’ perception about IoT devices at home: safety, energy efficiency and comfort are their main requirements.

AfterSmart Working is successfully growing in the workplace and technologies have become more and more user friendly, the desire for “smart” objects grows at home, too: from Smart Working to Smart Living.
The study shows that 76% of interviewees know the meaning of Smart Home and 66% has at least a connected device at home, and it is interesting to note that 39% intends to buy another one in the next 12 months. System reliability and easy installation underlie the processes of purchase, while safety and energy efficiency and comfort are the needs the connected devices can meet specifically.
33,6% considers as absolute priority the control of what is happening in the house, especially when nobody is at home, also through the use of smartphones. But with an aging population, smart home technologies are even a system that can help “frail” people according to 15% of interviewees.
The connected thermostat is a decisive factor of the Smart Home: 44% of interviewees is interested in a connected thermostat to adjust the temperature remotely. Energy saving and lower consumption are the main levers.

BTicino/Legrand respond to the desire for a Smart Home with a new product of the ElioT program:

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Smarther, a user-friendly Wi-Fi connected thermostat. 

The future of IoT is already here with the prototypes Entrée and O-tune:

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new archetypes of products meant to enhance the users’ experience.

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A skillfully planned acoustics.

Mascagni, manufacturing office furniture since 1930 and also working in the field of home and contract now for many years, has addressed the unavoidable issue of acoustic comfort thoroughly and in a structured manner, like a path that has developed consistently, by tackling the acoustic problem through customizable solutions of interior design, which have no competitors on the market.

The unique features of the products supplied by the Bologna-based company come from the adopted approach and find their roots in the company’s experience and know-how made of testing, synergies with suppliers who work in different industries and technologies never used before in furniture design.
The product presented at the last edition of Workplace 3.0 in Milan perfectly explain how Mascagni creates its products with love and care for the tiniest detail.

TréS is the new versatile, comfortable interior decoration range of modular soundproofing panels, easily and quickly rearranged.
The vertical wired metal partitions of TrèS spine, with their overlapping modules, divide space creatively and efficiently, without preventing communication from going on with its flows, through different levels and plain modules, made up of cabinets, metal, melamine or upholstered panels, and special tops. The last evolution is TrèS Screen: the panels structure are enriched through panels or courtesy, to create a personal space reconfigurable with extraordinary acoustic performance.

By partnering with 3F Filippi, a leader in lighting located near Bologna, was born Lux Sound, the sound-absorbing panel which turns on a feature essential for a comfortable all-round, light.
TréS Sound Sky System is like the beefed-up version of the Sound panel. Using modular and changeable articulated joints, the triangular ribs of the sound absorbing panels, in wood, melamine or textile, come to life and mould the space into peaceful areas that can be turned into extensive workplaces.

ALLinONE Slim is the range of partition walls that hides the secret of its polymorphism and adaptability inside its extruded aluminium sections. The construction can accommodate the panels of single, double or solid glass with an inner steel frame, regardless.
ALLinWOOD is an exploration that brings the natural products, again, in the insulating dividing partitions, a solid wood profile which welcomes in its quarries either single, double glazing or full façade.

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The house-atelier by Le Corbusier becomes Maison Tecno in Paris.

Maison d’Ozenfant, the house-atelier designed by Le Corbusier in 1922 for artist Amédée Ozenfant, was chosen by Tecno as its home in Paris. In this location marked not only by creativity but by application and thought, Tecno confirms its identity as a “design factory” that promotes the values of design, excellence and innovation.

It is the first residential project by Le Corbusier to test his design philosophy.
This modern purist architecture full of light becomes a place for relation and encounter between architects, identifying innovative solutions for new ways of working and living.

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Not a showroom, but a set to present the Tecno’s heritage through the iconic pieces, likeP40 by Osvaldo Borsani and Nomos table by Foster, and to experiment io.T (Intelligence of Tecno), its most recent research on smart furnishings inside a transparent conference space, delimited by the W80 and W40 partitions.

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Backpackcracy.

The term Backpackcracy expresses the “power of mobility” opposed to a static Bureaucracy, the etymological meaning of which is “power of the office”. “A change of perspective, a prerequisite to cope with the volatility, agility and complexity of the current job market” explains Leonardo Previ, professor of Human Resources Management at Università Cattolica in Milan and author of the book “Backpackcracy”, the e-book will be soon available in English, too.

Bureaucracy counts on norms, no provision for exceptions, while Backpackcracy is based on improv elements in addition to the structural ones. So, should our organization require unforeseen solutions, Backpackcracy could be the right answer.
Backpackcracy is based on the key principles:
Mobility, Nimbleness, Miniaturization, Quickness, Exploration, Conviviality.
A lot has already been written about Mobility, Nimbleness and Miniaturization,
while rather new is the concept of Conviviality, something that smart business enterprises are already reclaiming through comfortable kitchens and break areas for their employees to improve informal meetings.
Quickness is a new concept of the Millenials’ culture, it means that the way of working can be changed no less quick and fast than software is changing.
The word Exploration evokes journeys to remote countries and discovering of different cultures, yet the desks, offices and ways of working of our fellow workers can be explored with equal curiosity, thus generating value added.
Following the example of the Wandering Clerics in the twelfth century, even the Backpackcrats help greatly to the dissemination of knowledge.

Here are the things a perfect Backpackcrat usually carries:
First, the Void, a space for those things we thought couldn’t be of some use.
Of course a tablet or smartphone, a small connected device,, you can always be sure, together with traditional writing tools like a pen and paper notebook;
a along with something absolutely necessary such as a book of tickets for public transportation to move and contribute to sharing economy and a folding rule to measure all that can be measured.
Finally, a black box -a cybernetics symbol- to show how impossible it is to establish transparent relationships with people we are talking to: being aware of it allows an easier solution of misunderstandings.

( In the photos backpack by Nava)

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The silence by Dorfles: art+design.

Can art and industrial design successfully coexist? Snowsound-Art is the Caimi Brevetti’ answer to this question developed with the authoritative contribution of Professor Gillo Dorfles to discover new ways of opening channels of communication between art and industrial design. The artwork becomes a reproducible object with high functional performances, too.

The sound absorbing panels signed by Gillo Dorfles represent the mind between art and industrial design. From conception to completion, Gillo Dorfles, 103 years aged, has looked after every phase of this project to create four panel drawings, and give concrete expression to his artistic eclecticism.
In other words, art that is designed not just to be gazed upon, but to be put to practical use. A functional solution for acoustic comfort that is both beautiful and yet also reproducible as part of a series.

The Snowsound-Art sound-absorbing panels based on Gillo Dorfles’ drawings exemplify how the exchange of ideas between the worlds of art and industry can create something of value, which can also be produced like an assembly line object.
It is in this spirit of collaboration between art and industry that Dorfles and Caimi Brevetti undertook the design and construction of four large Snowsound wall and ceiling acoustic panels, which also function as “canvases” depicting works that Dorfles created between 1937 and 2017 under the rubric of “Gigantism in Design“.

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With this work of Gillo Dorfles we have a concrete example of how the eye is able to go beyond the surface of things, enabling us observers to realise that the creative process is infinite, just as the possibility of capturing the universal through specific details is also infinite, as the great medieval philosophers have taught us, provided that the “project”, that is to say the human person, remains central to the work of art. This is what “Gigantism of Design” is all about. Gillo Dorfles’ eclecticism is endlessly surprising, and here he has taken panels that serve a highly practical purpose and transformed them into a series of fantastic landscapes, through which the artist is watching us, perhaps a little surprised himself at what he has achieved.” quoted Aldo Colonetti.

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Spaces, a new business community format in Milan.

Milan was chosen by Regus as first Italian base for Amsterdam-born creative workspace pioneer. Located between newly developed Porta Nuova area and the Brera Design District, Spaces lands in Italy with the ambitious aim to redefine the concept of the workplace. It occupies 7 floors of a fully renovated building with a roof top with amazing view on Milano skyline.

Originating in Amsterdam, the Spaces format by Regus was built on the idea that success breeds more success. That’s why we’ve cultivated a community of members who are thinkers, achievers and imagineers. We’ve built workspaces that suit your every need. And our energetic staff attends to all the details so you can focus on your next big idea.

“The range of services offered is huge, from private offices to co-working spaces, meeting rooms, conference rooms and virtual offices, but the real Spaces hallmark is the community of thinkers, achievers and imagineers that we’ve cultivated.” quoted Emanuele Arpini, regional marketing manager of Spaces.

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“The interior design by Laboratorio Permanente blends urban and domestic approaches to create a workplace that inspires collaborative and creative ways of working” explains architect Angelica Sylos Labini.

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The position of the building is both exclusive and strategic, but above all reflects the soul of Spaces, indeed the culture will play a pivotal role in the neighbourhoods due to the abundance of libraries, bookshops, artisan’s ateliers, exhibition centres for art and design which will nourish the minds of the new and young talent that Milan has always attracted.
The new Spaces Porta Nuova provides excellent business and networking opportunities as well as an inspiring working environment.

Spaces offers:
5000 mq2,
740 mq2 exclusive Business Club,
3,300 mq2 private and co-working offices,
8 meeting rooms and 2 conference rooms,
Dedicated lounge bar,
Parking ( 25 cars).

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Sit-stand office desks to shape behavior.

Smart office means to adopt concepts of dynamic ergonomics, too; for higher comfort and greater efficiency, sometimes devices integrate digital technologies to support our Internet-oriented lifestyles. Following this IoT (Internet of Things) philosophy Linak launched DPG, a new family of very intuitive panels for the height adjustment of sit-stand desks, well-synthesized in the claim “Designed to shape behavior”.

During a normal workday, we all sit down too much and move too little. This is a common challenge, but how do we change it and turn it into a habit to use the height adjustable desk every day? This is a global challenge that we at Linak have chosen do our utmost to solve and develop a solution that will make desk users use their height adjustable desk more and in a new way.
Based on researches on behavioural design, Linak developed an innovative solution that will make desk users use their height adjustable desks more and in a new way.
The desks panel for height adjustable office desk is essential and needs to be:
Intuitive,
Motivational (give reminders to the user),
Digital.

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The DPG family consists of four desk panels ranging from a simple up/down panel to advanced versions with sophisticated features. All four DPG desk panels are intuitive as they are operated via tilt instead of buttons meaning you do not need to look while adjusting the desk. It does not get more intuitive.
Research proves that being reminded to stand up during a workday, results in an increased usage of the desk. So, reminders are integrated into three of the four DPG desk panels either via light and/or via notifications in the app.
Finally, digital means that an app is available for several platforms. Bluetooth® technology is integrated into three of the four DPG desk panels. Connect to the Desk Control™ app and it opens a wealth of options.

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The app that completes the DPG
The Desk Control™ app is available for phones and computers, and contains a lot features such as the possibility for individual settings, statistics and getting reminders to stand up. Optionally, the app can also be used to drive the desk up and down.
The app is downloadable free of charge from the different app stores
Truly unique and innovative, all data is of course synchronised between the different platforms. This means that if you change your settings e.g. in the app on the phone, it is automatically updated on the computer and in the desk panel itself.
The DPG is much more than just a new desk panel: it is a platform of endless functionality possibilities, yet designed with an impressive suite of standard features. It will change the way to adjust and use the height adjustable office desk.

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Sedus: sales increase of 5.3% .

Pleasing result in 2016 for Sedus Stoll Group with an increase in incoming orders (+4.3 %), sales (+5.3 %) and net income for the year (€ 9.5 million). And incoming orders continue to increase also in the first months of 2017. Innovative products, the attention to the changes in the workplace and the special focus on employee health are among the success factors.

With total sales at €188.5 million, the fiscal year of 2016 is one of the three best years in the company’s history. Incoming orders in the first four months of 2017 range already +4.2% above those of the previous year.
This pleasant operating result keeps the Sedus Stoll Group on a growth track and has enabled the company to expand its market share in terms of total market order growth.
Neither the announced Brexit nor political uncertainties in Europe and the USA have had a noticeably negative effect so far.

New products presented at Orgatec and Salone del Mobile Workplace 3.0 also contribute to the successful development.
Four of the Sedus innovations (the se:do swivel chair, the se:line conference chair, the se:works lounge furniture system, the se:wall partition and acoustics system) have already received a total of eight authoritative design awards.

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Estel for WOW (Wheels On Waves)an Andrea Stella’s “diversity” project.

Estel supports the project WOW-Wheels On Waves: a dream by the sailor Andrea Stella founder of “Lo Spirito di Stella” association.The WOW’s ambitious scope is to spread across the United States and to Europe a message of peace and respect for individuals with disabilities through two fundamental documents: the ONU Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Follow WOW on Facebook @WheelsOnWaves.

Estel is among the sponsors of WOW – Wheels On Waves, the first catamaran without architectural barriers in the world, that represents the celebration of “diversity”.

Before sailing from New York, last May 26th, the Secretary-General gave to Andrea the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities, signed in his own hand, to seal an important  document, already ratified by 166 Nations, but not enough well known yet.
This document will be kept inside the catamaran, during the entire journey that begins this week from New York and will arrive in Rome, in September. At this last stage, WOW team will consign the Convention to Pope Francis.

The WOW expedition challenge is to increase the awareness of the importance of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

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Venice Biennale Architecture 2018: Mario Cucinella curator of the Italian Pavilion.


Mario Cucinella
will be the curator of the Italian Pavilion for 16th Venice International Architecture Exhibition curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara (Grafton Architects) and promoted by the Biennale di Venezia Foundation.

The team led by the architect Mario Cucinella -winner of an invited competition by Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Tourism (MiBACT)- will propose “Archipelago Italy”: a great dynamic laboratory that focuses on the urban space formed by interior areas, which by extension and historical-cultural stratification, embodies the identity of our country.
Architect Cucinella explains: “Archipelago Italy is an opportunity to restore the centrality of expressions of quality in architecture, which can only emerge from empathy with sites, favoring the right measure over the grandiose gesture and accounting for the feasibility of the project. This reflection derives from a scientific reading of the territory based on four transversal themes: architecture and landscape, infrastructures, society and economy.

The opportunities that emerge from this research will be expressed in the meaningful selection of some thirty projects intended to promote a response to the needs of inhabiting, connecting, sharing and progressing – always in an integrated way.
Particular attention will be given to the post-earthquake emergency context of the Central Apennine region, for which this project will become a rallying cry.
As part of the proposal, Mario Cucinella / MCA also suggested to MiBACT that it bring the Pavilion outside the spaces of the Venice Biennale, and in order to establish a biunivocal relationship with the territory, that concrete involvement of local communities should be expected.

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Captions
Mario Cucinella portrait by Luca Maria Castelli.
Some recent and under construction projects by MCA (from left):
 Unipol Grouunder construction  in Milan Milano Porta Nuova.
One Airport Square, Accra, Ghana.
Nursery school in Guastalla,Italy.
Headquarters Coima under construction at Porta Nuova in Milan.
Yvonne Farrell e Shelley McNamara (Grafton Architects).

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Pills and trends just after Milano Design Week.

A few ironic and qualified reflections by our special reporters Tatiana Milone and Marta Bernstein just after the Milano Design Week, “when you sort out the too many photos (what’s that? Who’s he?… dump it!) and you comment on what you’ve been feeling”.

Here is the conversation between two designers after visiting the the launch of the new collection by Ron Arad at the Danese exhibition (photo 1 upper):
Designer #1: “Danese, what an amazing show! Ironic and definitely far from the pink – brass – marble – parrots – palms mix”.
Designer #2: “Anyway, marble-parrots-brass-palms, that’s always better than the new 2017 mix: shabby wall – copper – luxury fabric – random blown glass- smoked plate glass- bronze profiles”.
We can confirm, no better synthesis of Milano Design Week 2017 could be possible.

Wonderful courtyards have opened, Palazzo Bovara, Palazzo Isimbardi (Catalan design … but looks like Nordic style…), Palazzo Turati.
Public spaces and private apartments fit and dress in design.
Some scenic, glass and brass tendencies are confirmed by Rossana Orlandi and the London based Se Collections (photo 2,3,4,5).

Absolutely unique the Hermès installation set up at Pelota by Charlotte Macaux Perelman: natural materials, objects and textiles (photo 6,7).
Terracotta, copper, wood we also find them at the fair at the Salone del Mobile in the home settings of Alf da Fre, in the refined new furnishings of De Castelli (Alessandra Baldereschi for the Tracing Identity project, photo 8), in the elegant compositions inside Estel’s stand (photo 9).

Sparkling Euroluce! Many new ideas and fittings: the new light lines by Davide Groppi (photo 10), the curves by Artemide (photo 11), the geometries by Vibia and Flos (photo 12) and the unsurpassed light poems by Nendo for Flos. (photo 13)

Many of Kvadrat‘s fabrics, coordinated with perfect palettes and designs, have just been employed by Patricia Urquiola for Moroso.

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The new glittering weaves by the sisters Marie and Annica Eklund, owners of trendy company Bolon. (photo 14)
At 5Vie, the growing Fuorisalone area, Cartier‘s super luxury installation was set in the San Remo Garage; nearby the designer Samanta Mancone exhibits tapestry and blankets- from the Italian textile tradition- made of recycled materials. (photo 15)
Paola Lenti launched new textures and warm happily glittering colors in a subtropical mood at the new location at via Orobia. (photo 16)

Patricia Urquiola, new art director of Cassina, presents new colors and new forms at the new Fondazione Feltrinelli headquarters by Herzog & De Meuron.
De Padova and Carl Hansen presented new collections with classic elements inspired by the 1960s.
Fritz Hansen inside the atelier of Luisa Beccaria proposes its own hotel: a little colorful and cheerful luxury hostel. (photo 17)
Nilufar Depot was a joy to the eyes for lovers of modern design: a focus on great beauty masterpieces (also an original of the famous 881, in the chronicles for the ongoing dispute between Cassina and Molteni).

Text by Tatiana Milone and Marta Bernstein

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Amazing exhibition at Ventura Centrale, first edition of the new location Fuorisalone:  Maarten Baas & Lensvelt won the Milan Design Awards 2017 for the installation “May I have your attention, please?”