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At first seating comfort, now environmental comfort: 30 years of continued success.

Ares Line, Italian leading company producer of office chairs and contract seatings, celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2017.
A substantial history of continued success and strategies to react to market changes.
So far the focus was on ergonomic aspects and seating comfort, now the scope has been extended to environmental comfort through Fonology based on acoustic technological solutions. Ares Line could combine passion for handicraft and the power of an economic structure, focusing on finding next-generation materials and innovative applications.

Environment-friendliness, internationalization and lean thinking are three basic driving forces behind its growth, as explained in our interview by Nicola Franceschi, CEO and founding partner of Ares Line e di Fonology, and creator of Contract Design Network.

Which are the main steps in the increasing growing of Ares Line?

“In 2017 we celebrated our 30 years and, together with my partner Roberto Zuccato, I can proudly say that, starting from scratch, we are now a top-level organization!
In short, four major milestones:
In 1995, when we realized that the chair was underestimated in workplaces, together with the designer Giovanni Baccolini, we expanded our supply to seating systems for universities, auditorium, conference rooms and theaters. This choice led to the success of our brand worldwide.
At the same time we were the first manufacturers of office chairs in Italy to certify the company (standard ISO 9001).
The collaboration with Pininfarina, in 2002, led to the creation of several successful models, among them Xten chair, the chair system for auditorium Premier and the cool waiting sofa PF3.
Finally, Contract Design Network (CDN) was established in 2011, it is a network of companies that work together, to combine their research in order to offer ergonomic environments and cutting-edge design.

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At first seating comfort, now environmental comfort…Being a manufacturer of chair, why did Ares Line extend its applications to the field of acoustics? 

Seating systems for community have always been an integral part of an acoustic project, and we aimed to the supply of an increasingly complete and qualified service, so we have now Fonology, a division specifically dealing with architectural acoustics and with a new design approach based on several materials. Our team is steadily looking for innovative and refined acoustic materials.

Which iconic products are representative of Ares Line identity to the fullest? 

Xten Chair is our iconic product by definition.
However, the best-seller is the desk system Omnia with the following new model named Evolution, both designed by Giovanni Baccolini.
Finally, Papillon, acknowledged as the best folding chair for theaters with several attempts to imitate the product.

 

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1, Xten Chair by Pininfarina for Ares Line.
2, Evolution desk system by Ares Line and acoustic panels Listen by Fonology at Auditorium della Pontificia Università Gregoriana in Rome.
3, 4 Different fit out equipped with Evolution in the multimedia rooms of Future Learning Space: UPO Campus Perrone in Novara.


5, Papillon Chair inside the multifunction hall Crosà Neira
6, Rossini arm chair: customized solution for Teatro Comunale di Bologna.
7, Customized chairs inside the concert hall of Carmen Würth Forum designed by Chipperfield.
8, Customized solution at BNP Paribas in Luxembourg.

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999 questions on contemporary living.

Well done, Stefano Mirti! His idea of contemporary habitation is free from stereotypes and immune to the seduction of the so-called tasteful settings furnished with design masterpieces. For the actual home is dynamic and messy.

“999 questions on contemporary living” is not a “cool show” as traditionally understood. It’s a chaotic souk, lively and ever-evolving, just like our home and how we feel living in it.

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A concept emphasized by its outfitting (designed by Petra Tikulin): scaffoldings that refer to a work in progress. Provisional structures to define areas meant for several projects: a journey across continents, both physical and virtual, material objects and immaterial services, technologies and rites. Perhaps the object is not to find 999 answers, but to generate more questions.

999 is a difficult and engaging exhibition, a collective workshop not to be enjoyed passively, it calls for energy, open-mindedness and an effort to enter imaginary scenarios, logics and cultures based on unusual home ideas. A new display format, started on social media a few months ago and expected to live also after the closing date.
The show spins out its plot on concepts of community, co-design and shared economy, involving schools, institutions and enterprises..
About 50 different projects, from co-housing to coworking, from temporary hotel to shared spaces. Many approaches to engage in a participating and interactive manner.

Edison is the main partner.

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Caimi Brevetti, partner supplied the sound absorbing curtain and ask” Do you know that an acoustic solution can decorate your home?”

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Manerba, technical partner, furnished an “Undecided Space” an in-between area and a new approach for a flexible conference room that changes identity, image and function.

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Tower Sassetti, the icon of an innovative Financial District.

A place to host professionals and foster technological innovation in the financial community, in the heart of the Fintech District in Milan. The renovation of the Sassetti Tower, designed by L22 Urban & Building, started from the glass curtain façade to the internal offices, a dynamic ecosystem created by Sellalab to promote cooperation and business partnership.

The renovation of the tower Sassetti at Via Sassetti 32 in Milan wanted to create an iconic building in the Fintech District area, recently become the financial and commercial heart of Milan.

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The L22’s design approach, as commissioned by Invesco Real Estate, which bought the property in 2015, is based around a cutting-edge vision where the efficiency and flexibility of the workplaces are combined with an innovative façade design, that literally opens the building to the city, emphasising the building presence in the square.

Starting from the original project made by the engineers Franco Morini and Emilio Pereira in 1990-92, the glass curtain facade is featured with an overlapping pattern of slender horizontal and vertical elements, a structural grid extended beyond the terrace to emphasise the vertical nature of the tower, while the Santafiore Lavagrigia stones and columns at the base gives a sensation of solidity and elegance.
The entrance gates facing the square have been completely removed to open up the first floor to create visual continuity between the outside and the interiors where the double-height hall announces functions both as a reception area and a dynamic rest area.

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The office spaces are designed by L22 Urban & Building. The first eight floors of the office building are taken up by Copernico with Banca Sella occupying levels 9-11. The 12th and 13th floor, instead, are designed as a co-working environment and the events space with the terrace.
Copernico has also chosen the professionals and the star-ups that will be accommodated in the office levels, renovated by Sellalab focusing on efficiency and flexibility, with a dedicated loggia at the rear for each floor.
The last floor hosts a 270 sqm spacious terrace with an events room incorporated in closed and ancillary spaces.

The renovation has also involved the energy efficiency of the building: chosen materials, low-energy lighting and the quality of the interiors has made the Torre Sassetti suitable for the platinum-level LEED certification.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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A Place of Energy: the Red Bull HQ in Milan.

The Red Bull HQ in Milan express thoroughly the company’s mission: energize people. The architect firm Il Prisma has told the multi-faceted activity of the company all across the space, through four different worksettings, expressing the kind useful energy for a modern workplace: energy is nightlife, energy is take it easy, energy is sport and energy is adventure.

A workplace that “gives you wings” and expresses perfectly the vision of the company. That was the idea behind the Red Bull HQ in Milan, designed by Il Prisma, following their multidisciplinary approach “Redefine your habits, centred on innovation, technology and sensory perception.

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“Energy”
is the leading idea of the project and of the company’s vision that has inspired four different environments.
The “Welcome Experience” areas, as the entrance and the reception, recall the dynamism and amusement of the “Energy of the nightlife”. An experience of sharing, break and working, as well, where Red Bull cans are offered in small coolers on the side of the stairs.

The working environment is inspired by the adrenaline and adventurous activity that the company has sponsored in these years, and it aims to let people express their own talent and go beyond any difficulties.

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The spaces dedicated to teamworking are inspired by the sport’s value: tenacity, dynamism, sharing of the problems and ideas to reach a common goal.
Finally, “Energy is take it easy” is the slogan chosen for the break and relax areas. Slowing down, sometimes, is the key to productivity. Il Prisma has designed a playful atmosphere that helps workers to “recharge workers’ energy” and to create a fertile workplace where ideas are shared and actually take place.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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Memo and Naughtone: designing the Living Office.

The Herman Miller‘s Living Office approach means to see the workplace as it is lived day by day, focusing on the real needs and problems of the people and trying to solve them with specific, and not standard, solutions. The work system Memo and the Naughtone‘s products are an example of what Neale Vanstone, Vice-president EMEA Herman Miller, considers the mission of the company “creating an inspiring design to help people do great things.”

“We are a problem-solving company, so our approach to design is people-centred. We are a global company, but we think locally”, with these words Neale Vanstone describes the Herman Miller‘s view of the Living Office design approach in a recent interview for WOW!.

Resulting of a holistic approach research, that has envolved different professional figures as managers, anthropologists, sociologists, designers, the Living Office approach is based on the fact that the office is a dynamic environment, that change its needs and create new problems day by day. That brings to the conclusion that a fixed, standard and out-of-context design is to avoid.
“We are a design company: from 1968, when we introduced the Action Office, to 1994 when we introduced the Aeron chair, and more recently with the introduction of the Living Office approach. The design is inherited in what Herman Miller does. Our mission is to create an inspiring design to help people do great things”, Vanstone concludes.

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The working system Memo is an example of how the Living Office approach can be translated into furniture. Memo is designed by Tim Wallace with the purpose of helping companies to be more agile, through the change of the desk structure, using a simple panel as a central spine which replaces the traditional beam.

“Customers don’t value the basic function of a fixed desk in the way that they used to. Typically, offices accommodate groups of workers in clusters of benches or desks, which provide one basic function regardless of what you’re doing.  I saw the opportunity to design a better type of bench, still providing the end-user with a pleasing work experience.” Tim Wallace says.

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As the name itself says, Naughtone‘s “Come together” is an eclectic and free-standing range of furniture, designed for a dynamic and agile working environment and for being used and composed in different situations and along with various kind of furniture.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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1-4, Memo, Tim Wallace, Herman Miller.
5, Hatch, Naughtone. Hatch is designed to be plan into one, two or three seat units configuration, with a firm upright sit and compact dimensions, suitable for a modern commercial environment.
6, Knot Table, Naughtone. Knot table is designed to fit in the multi-purpose seating landscapes that are becoming more common in the workplaces. It is lightweight, and uncluttered making it intuitive to mediate between different products.
7, Softbox, Naughtone. Softbox is a fully upholstered storage units, thought to provide a flexible solution for different types of compositions. It can be completely customised and thanks to its sound absorption characteristic can be used also as a divider to create ad-hoc zones in the space.
8, Cloud desk, Naughtone.  The table is part of the Cloud range, “a visual and acoustic heaven”, a place to sit and concentrate.
9, The Symbol, Naughtone.  The Symbol seating range is designed to feel like part of the architecture, with a firm upright sit and compact dimensions, that allows to insert it in a modern and dynamic working environment.

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The Arcadis offices in Milan (D2U).

Implement the smart working approach and create more synergy in the working team through a smart design: that was the brief given to D2U to design the Arcadis offices in Milan. Furniture, materials and colours were chosen to improve an ergonomic approach, sound absorption and to create a comfortable and, at the same time, flexible environment.

The 1.500 sqm workplace chosen by Arcadis to join all the company’s offices in the same place, as the Managing Director Roberto Talotta says, represented the opportunity to “create more and more synergy within the working team and to efficiently implement group guidelines on smart working approach”. The architect Jacopo della Fontana has led the D2U architect team along with the Arcadis Project Manager Alberto Spacone.

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The project has been conceived with two big naves, accessible by both the two floors, connected by open stairs and separated in the centre with a mezzanine. The offices are divided into activity areas, separated by big conference tables and individual and private workstations, allowing, however, the required flexibility to embrace the possible company’s future needs and changes.

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These space, along with the reception area and the internal coffee bar, contributes to create a good balance of individual, teamworking and private spaces, in order to allow the workers to find the perfect setting for each daily need.

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As Jacopo della Fontana says, “working alongside with the client has allowed us to implement the brief with a creative approach, respecting schedules and costs constraints”, focusing on materials, colors and furniture, in order to create a communicative environment, where all the material, sound absorption and ergonomic parameters are thoroughly respected.
The furniture is most of all designed by the Dutch company Ahrend, with the adding of some other pieces as the moquette Interface.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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Copernico Martesana: well-being and business trends.

A dynamic hub where well-being and business trends are well balanced, a flexible, hybrid and multifunctional workplace, core of an urban renovation process. The simple internal design of Copernico Martesana in Milan follows the main trends and needs of the new ways of working, like the biophilic design of the Oxygen Room and the home-feeling given by the Loft Office.

The Copernico Platform for Smart Working is constantly growing; following the successful experiences of Copernico Centrale, ClubHouse Brera , the workplace in Turin, and many others, the 6.500 sqm of the thirteenth Copernico hub in the north-eastern part of Milan.
“With Copernico Martesana we want to put our focus on the wellbeing of each worker becoming, at the same time, actors in the new economic processes that lead to new business opportunity”, Pietro Martani, Copernico’s CEO, says. “We want to anticipate the ever-evolving market and workers needs”.

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Copernico Martesana is designed by the firm Studio DC10, mixing different and connected environments as offices, meeting space, lounge area.

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Interior design is inspired by “genius loci” and the building of the ’70s was transformed in a vibrant environment featured by a cool, industrial design.

The centre of the project is the main cafeteria, a hybrid and informal meeting space, designed together by Bunker, Torricelli Associati and Weltgebraus to foster the culture of communication and interaction.

08-Copernico Martesana-hub-wow-webmagazineStudio DC10 has, also, added two environments completely dedicated to the wellbeing of the people: the Oxygen room, a green area where workers can find some rest form the daily stress,  the Loft Office, a comfortable place giving the sense of home-feeling and cosiness and an Art Gallery.

For the interiors, a neutral and neat design was chosen in order to help communication and to create a homogeneous workplace.
“The innovative system Copernico is made by three dimensions: space, connection, culture“, Pietro Martani concludes. “Copernico Martesana wants to become a benchmark in the area”, transmitting his features to an urban redeveloping area.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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The headphones RIG 800LX Plantronics won the Innovation Award CES 2018.

This is the tenth consecutive year that Plantronics, an audio pioneer and communications technology leader, has been recognized by the Consumer Technology Association for its innovative audio solutions. The wireless headphones RIG 800LX that recently awarded by the CES 2018 Innovation Award in the gaming category, are now available together with the RIG 400LX, RIG 600LX models. All the family of gaming headphones featuring Dolby Atmos innovative technology.
RIG 800LX will be on display in the Innovation Showcase in the Venetian Ballroom at CES Tech West 2018, which runs January 9-12, 2018, in Las Vegas.

Products entered in the prestigious CES 2018 Innovation Award are judged by a preeminent panel of independent industrial designers, independent engineers and members of the trade media to honor outstanding design and engineering in cutting edge consumer electronics products across 28 product categories.
The innovative technology Dolby Atmos of RIG 800LX, that seduced the jury, is also available with the wireless headphones RIG 400LX and RIG 600LX.
This special audio enhancement for Xbox One and Windows 10 lets gamers hear sounds with three-dimensional clarity – from above and below, in front and behind – giving them increased advantage in nearly any gaming scenario.

“I’ve never met a gamer who wasn’t looking for some sort of competitive edge- said Alessandro Laterza, Head of Consumer Sales at Plantronics Italia- Our newest RIG line with Dolby Atmos enables multi-directional, fully immersive audio cues like nothing else in the market today. Combine that with a long-lasting battery life and signature lightweight design, and the choice becomes obvious. If you want a true 360 competitive edge, Plantronics RIG with Dolby Atmos has you covered.”

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Plantronics RIG 800LX Wireless Features:
Dolby Atmos for Headphones Activation: Provides gamers with full, 3-D audio by changing the way developers treat sound in-game. Instead of placing audio in a flattened 2D circle, Dolby Atmos technology creates a full sphere of sound that moves around the gamer – above and below, in front and behind.
Performance Audio: Amplified audio with matched 40 mm drivers brings the soundstage to life. Low frequency resonators reinforce bass and limit distortion. When done talking, just flip up the mic to mute it.
Precise Controls: Analog dials help you quickly adjust the balance between game and chat audio, as well as master volume. Choose an EQ setting to isolate pure highs, intensify the mid-range, enjoy seismic bass or enhance vocal focus.
Advanced Battery: Wireless headset with a 24-hour battery life that allows players to focus on gaming without worrying if the headset will lose power. When the headset needs to be charged, the enhanced quick-charging battery provides three hours of gaming per 30 minutes of charge.

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Plantronics RIG 400LX and RIG 600LX Features:
RIG 400LX and RIG 600LX also feature Dolby Atmos for Headphone activation. RIG 400LX features 40 mm drivers which deliver explosive game audio that puts you right in the middle of the action. The noise-cancelling boom mic is always ready for chat and ensures your teammates hear you loud and clear. RIG 600LX delivers a balanced soundstage with distortion-free bass that helps you immerse in the experience without masking the subtle audio cues you must hear to stay in the game. Both models include the RIG LX1 pro level amp with three audio EQ modes, dual analog control-wheels for game/chat balance and an aux input for music.

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RIG 400LX, RIG 600LX and RIG 800LX are available at plantronics.com and major retailers for $99.99, $129.99 and $149.99 respectively.

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CasaCDN: people and things come together in Milan.

CasaCDN is a new meeting place in Milan where people and things come together to develop Contract Design Network (CDN) business. Opening next 13th and 14th December.

Nicola Franceschi, CEO of Ares Line, came up with the idea for the Contract Design Network (CDN) in 2011 and it has gone on to gain its own identity and strength over the years.
The CDN is based on a strategic business agreement between 11 Italian companies which together have total revenues of over Euro 70 million, employ a workforce of around 300 people and have a sales force of over 200 professionals. So far, they have performed almost 100 joint projects, for estimated revenues of over Euro 10 million (principally over the last three years).

One of the major driving forces behind the CasaCDN is Fabio Maset, owner of MosaicoGroup, one of the network’s most dynamic companies. It will be home to the entire CDN team. CasaCDN will be the place where the CDN partners meet and also the location for training events and the presentation of new products and solutions.

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The area is on three levels and includes a small multi-purpose room with seating for around 20 people on the ground- floor level, home to all the innovative aspects of the 11 companies involved. There is also a meeting area and a joint workspace with 8 workstations on the ground floor and the first floor, and a second conference room seating 24 people in the basement. There are video and audio connections in all rooms, which all have the latest technological equipment.

The intention is to open others in various strategic cities and add to the CDN showrooms already operating in Paris Rabat and Managua.

CasaCDN: Viale Gian Galeazzo 31, Milan.
Opening evening with musical entertainment and finger food on 13 and 14 December, from 4,00 to 8,30 p.m., by invitation only. (info@contractdesignnetwork.com)

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Undecided Collection: creative dynamism and refined sensuality.

More and more “indecided” and increasingly fascinating, Manerba‘s Undecided Sofa expands and becomes Undecided Collection. The seating solution designed by Raffaella Mangiarotti and Ilkka Suppanen, includes armchairs, chaise longs and sofas, available in different heigh of backrest and also made with sound absorbing upholstery and coatings to improve privacy.

The mood of Fioraio Bianchi Caffè in Milan (a former flower shop transformed in a romantic  bistrot) was the perfect setting for the presentation of the new seating collection to enhance its sensuality and dynamic creativity and to inspire fascinating environments.

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Undecided Collection is the perfect seating solution for hybrid, contemporary and creative workplaces that respect your privacy.
It is characterized by an adjustable in height backrest, like a “personal colored patchwork”.

Thanks to its high performances and marked chromatism, it defines a new and adaptable landscape that fits to different situations as at work as at home.

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Giuliano Dall’Ò is the new President of GBC Italia.

Green Building Council Italia votes its new president: Giuliano Dall’Ò, a member of GBC Italia’s Scientific Technical Committee since 2010. The vice-president is Marco Mari.

Giuliano Dall’Ò teaches Environmental Technical Physics at the Polytechnic University in Milan. He is one of the leading Italian and European experts in energy and environmental sustainability and certification.
He is also the author of Leadership in Green Building, that presents the main  LEED and Green Building in Italy.

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The new Executive Committee:
Giuliano Dall’Ò, President
Marco Mari ,Vice President
Roberto Cereda
Thomas Messervey
Manuela Ojan
Eleonora Sablone
Mario Zambrini

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Two new awards to Caimi Brevetti for Snowsound by German Design Award 2018.

Two new awards to Caimi Brevetti for Snowsound by German Design Award 2018: a new prizes to the calculation software and a Special Mention to Diesis sound absorbing element, designed by Atelier Mendini. Both the products were also awarded by Neocon last summer.

German Design Award is an authoritative competition funded by Bundestag since 1953 acknowledging products that represent pioneering contributions to the international design landscape.

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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.

The Snowsound calculation software has won the prestigious German Design Award award 2018 in the category “Excellent Communications Design Interactive User Experience”.
The importance of the award underlines once again the excellence of the calculation software that Caimi Brevetti makes available to its dealers.

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Special Mention to Diesis sound absorbing element, designed by Alessandro Mendini e Francesco Mendini –Atelier Mendini- made with the patented Snowsound Fiber technology.
It is a system of sound-absorbing Snowsound Fiber drapes, realized with soft interwoven polyester fibers that are inherently fire-resistant (in different versions: steel structure, free-standing or hanging).
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.

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4 prizes to Kinnarps by German Design Award 2018.

Kinnarps with its brands MartnStoll and Skandiform, was awarded by German Design Award,  the authoritative competition acknowledging products that represent pioneering contributions to the international design landscape.
Among the winners of the 2018 edition there are Collection S collection family chairs, Space system, Matsumoto table and Phase armchair.
The prize-giving ceremony will be held on February 9th in the context of  Ambiente fair in Frankfurt am Main.

More than 5000 entry products were presented to participate to the final selection for the German Design Award 2018. Following the rigorous selection by the jury, were awarded only those that represent the highest standards in terms of quality and innovation at international level.

“We are very proud to receive such a highly prestigious award and we thank the jury for acknowledging our design and awarding two products work where the aim was to combine comfort and top quality in the best possible way says and develop solutions for the office life of today and tomorrow, offering endless possibilities.” says Elisabeth Slunge, Director Global Range and Communications at Kinnarps.

To win the German Design Award is very attractive since you are nominated and can not apply for the award. This of course makes the award even more desirable.” says Maria Lehmann, Sales- and Marketing Manager at Skandiform.

Kinnarps is proud to receive the prestigious award for four products:

Collection S, by MartinStoll (brand of Kinnarps Group).
The Collection S executive chair family, designed by NOA Intelligent Design, is rooted in the heritage of the brand and consists of task chairs, meeting chairs and lounge chairs, which offer various functional features and share the high level of quality and the common design expression.
“The chair family has thought-out material choices and a high level of craftsmanship that well suit the executive environments
” quoted Martin Rau, International Product Manager for MartinStoll.
“It is based on sophisticated performance like perfect ergonomic functionality, high quality and durability. Where heritage and craftsmanship meet modern lightness and sculpture-like design. The series is created to fit ideal into modern advanced office life” explains the designers Michael Lammel and Markus Heller from NOA Intelligent Design.

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Space furniture/storage system by Kinnarps.
Space is a furniture concept designed by Stefan Brodbeck (Brodbeck Design) for today’s and tomorrow’s way of working, meeting and storing. The range is based on a large number of storage modules which are connected and combined depending on the functionality and look you want. The flexibility of the range enables both concentration and discussions as well as space for group and private areas.
Design creates differentiation as well as orientation. So does the storage system Space, which has exciting features and options to create functional but also emotional and inspiring office space solutions” explains the designer Stefan Brodbeck.

 

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Matsumoto, by Skandiform (brand of Kinnarps Group).
A table named after the Japanese city Matsumoto, where Claesson Koivisto Rune has designed a flagship store with a café. It is a completely new table with a different design made for cafées. A table for two was developed, which when lined up edge-to-edge forms a kind of long café table. The tabletop comes in white or blackstained ash, pillar and footplate in white or black lacquer.

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Phaze by Skandiform (brand of Kinnarps Group).
An armchair that embraces you, providing generous personal space. Several linked together create a beautiful, undulating shape.
I was thinking of a design that embraces my philosophy of sensual minimalism and repetition.” said the designer Karim Rashid.

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Thinline by Ai Weiwei at Amsterdam Light Festival (30 november/21 January).

Amsterdam Light Festival is coming again from the 30th of November 2017 until the 21st of January 2018 and the city centre of Amsterdam will be transformed into the biggest open light museum with artworks and installations made by contemporary artists, designers and architects enlightening the canals and the Marineterre in Amsterdam.
35 artworks, among them is ‘thinline’ the site-specific by Ai Weiwei, who questions the concept of borders by creating a seven kilometers long light line representing a border through the city.

“We are very proud of the international line-up of Amsterdam Light Festival. Every year we welcome the international top on the art and design spectrum. Most of the Dutch participants are also active on an international level as well.” quoted Lennart Booij, creative director.
Star of the 6th edition is the Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei; his artwork will span over a distance of 6.5 kilometres and encompasses the entire water exposition.
With ‘thinline’ Ai Weiwei challenges viewers to think about the meaning of borders, figuratively as well as literally. Who determines a border? Do they protect or exclude?

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Thinline limited edition
Ai Weiwei created an artwork especially for Amsterdam Light Festival in a limited and signed edition of 100 pieces. Available through Amsterdam Light Festival. The profit of the series contributes to the realization of Weiwei’s artwork ‘thinline’ that has a prominent role during the festival. On the 29th of November there is a special meet & greet with the artists, who delivers the series after the festival.
The dimensions of ‘thinline, limited edition’ are 60 x 45 x 15 centimetres. The artworks will be signed and delivered with a certificate of authenticity. With pre-subscription the price of the artwork is € 2.500, including VAT + shipping costs. (For more information jorna@amsterdamlightfestival.com ).

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Artworks on the water.
English participants of the water exposition of Amsterdam Light Festial are artist Rona Lee and Studio Balmond. From Kosovo there is Driton Selmani and also Bagus Pandega from Indonesia contributes. Dutch artists and studios are Lambert Kamps, Floriaan Ganzevoort, Viktor Engbers, Paul Vendel & Sandra de Wolf, Claes Meijer, Lynne Leegte, VENIVIDIMULTIPLEX, Lighting Design Academy, VOUW, HOH Architecten and Gerard Slokker & Ludy Feyen. The United States are represented by Lauren Ewing and Ben Zamora, from Belgium design agency ACTLD from Koert Vermeulen creates an artwork and work of the German Claudia Reh is also to be admired.

Artworks on land.
From The Netherlands Peter Vink, Vinny Jones, Helmut Dick, Lidy Six, AlexP, Nick Verstand & Sjoerd Ter Borg, Bas Peeters, Verena Hall, Hanna Betsema and the Amsterdam Creative Industries Nework participitate on the land exposition on the Marineterrein Amsterdam. From Japan there are Takeo Sugamata and Yasuhiro Chida and also the Italian ATI Suffix delivers a contribution. In addition there are artworks by Reanne Niceforo & Phil Sutherland from Canada, Moritz Waldemeyer and Liubov Moskvina from Germany and there is work by the Iranian artists Shima Jahani, Zoha Khaniki & Sina Hasanlou.

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Great sportsmen testimonials for the new communication of Smarther BTicino.

The BTicino’s attitude to innovation is focused on products and communication, too. Following the intriguing episodes serie titled “Il Mistero Sottile” (The Thin Mystery), the new amazing communication “Your Ideal Climate, at Your Own Home, too” chooses as testimonials for the Smarther connected thermostat, two legendary international extreme sport masters.

Michele Pontrandolfo arctic explorer with active explorations in Greenland and the South Pole- and Marco Olmomarathon runner who participated several times at the Marathon des Sables in the Moroccan desert- are the testimonials for the warm and cold temperature in the new, engaging campaign of communication BTicino to launch Smarther, the user-friendly Wi-Fi connected thermostat of the Eliot family by BTicino, leader of Legrand Group.

Until the end of October, the ADV campaign integrates web, social and press and provides online videos  and the same contents on the Facebook and Instagram pages of BTicino as well.

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The iconic orange scissors by Fiskars are 50 years old.

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary, the Helsinki Design Museum dedicates an exhibition to the legendary scissors created by Olof Bäckström, the first with plastic handle, a masterpiece of Scandinavian design part of our daily scenario and present in the design collection of MoMa in New York.
The success orange color, now patented and become corporate color, was a fortuitous choice!

The history Fiskars steel mill, based in the homonymous village in Finland, started in 1649.

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During the following centuries, it marked a constant evolutionary path; among many important steps, a fundamental one was in 1967 when the first scissors with plastic handle were created, this material was innovative and particularly ergonomic, too.

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Fiskars Orange, a successful random choice.
Three colors were proposed for the handle (red carmine, black and green), but when the prototype was sent to production, in the machine remained the orange color of another product.
So, this bright color was added to those already selected and a democratic poll among the factory workers led to the final choice: 9 votes in favor and 7 dissenting.
Thanks to that choice, Fiskars Orange® has become a registered trademark and the corporate color of the company.

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Design for all, ergonomics and constant innovation.
Today, Fiskars expands its design, engineering and production to a wide range of professional and amateur tools, for home and office, for tailoring and hairdressing.
The concept of design to all inspired scissors for left-handed users and scissors equipped with a patented effort reduction mechanism to assist users with reduced hands skills.

 

Thanks to the steering of Olavi Lindén, Chief Designer at Fiskars since 1984, innovation is constantly in progress; research, development and production cover nowadays a wide range of knives, kitchen tools and pots and gardening tools.
Design and ergonomics remain the main concepts and the focus for all production.

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Gianfranco Marinelli is the 7th president of Assufficio.

On September 20th, 2017 the directory board of Assufficio (Italian Association of Furniture Manufacturers for office and contract) unanimously voted the new president: Gianfranco Marinelli. He is the seventh president of the Association.

“The task and responsibility of the Association is to give new boost and lymph to the office furniture sector,” quoted Gianfranco Marinelli, who was sales manager in Unifor for a long time and now works in Citterio (Molteni Group).
The new President of Assufficio also highlighted the priorities of the new strategies:
The next edition of the Salone Ufficio Workplace3.0 that will be held in 2019;
the relationship with Consip;
the expansion on international markets;
the evolution and the technological development of the office industry.

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The new directory board is composed by:
Gianfranco Marinelli (Citterio Spa)
Alberto De Zan (Dieffebi Spa)
Alessandro Fantoni (Fantoni Spa)
Nicola Franceschi (Ares Line Spa)
Massimo Stella(Estel Spa)
Raimondo Taraborrelli (Styloffice Spa)
Libero Gregoletto (Luxy Spa)
Remo Lucchi (Line Kit)
Roberto Cigana (Quadrifoglio)
Giuliano Mosconi (Tecno Spa)
Grazia Manerba (Manerba Spa)
Carlo Molteni (Unifor Spa)
Giancarlo Cappellari (Facau Srl)
Gianmaria Mezzalira (Sinetica Industries Srl)
Roberto Motti (Centrufficio Loreto Spa)
Massimiliano Zamò (Lineafabbrica Srl).

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Piazza del Vento: an installation by OBR and Renzo Piano for the Genoa Boat Show.

Piazza del Vento (The Square of the Wind) is the poetic site specific installation designed by OBR, inspired by a ​​Renzo Piano’s idea, for the Salone Nautico Internazionale di Genova (Genoa International Boat Show). It expresses the strong link between the city of Genoa and the exhibition promoted by Ucina (with the support of Spim). More than a landscape design and interactive square, it is an art work that underlines wind, sun and sea: the environmental and energetic phenomena that represent the legacy of the ancient Marinara Republic of Genoa.

The Square of the Wind is a new urban landmark and multisensory installation in the heart of Genoa’s harbor; it was conceived by Renzo Piano, designed by OBR and realized by Capoferri for the 57th Genoa International Boat Show (21/26th September 2017).

Paolo Brescia and Tommaso Principi, founders of OBR, quoted: We conceived a temporary installation which turnes into a permanent artwork, creating a public space where to celebrate the rite of urbanity on the sea, enshrining the unbreakable link between the Salone Nautico and the city of Genoa”
La Piazza del Vento allows all the citizens to interact with the environmental and energy phenomena of the sea, such as wind and sun.

“It consist of 57 masts in red maple wood and white steel (engineered and offered by Capoferri), 12 meters tall and bound together with textile cables with dacron triangular jibs inferred on. On the top of each mast a Windex is placed, sewing colored spinnaker’s fabric to form the shape of a “flame” highlighting the direction and the intensity of the wind”.
In order to enhance the interaction with the people, and to enjoy this amazing experience, OBR designed some double seat swings in between the masts, where to sit in couple in the shade of the sails while looking toward the sea.

This emotional experience can realize the claim of the 57th edition of the Boat Show: “where life and sea come together“.

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Technical sponsors of the Piazza del Vento:
Capoferri spa, Harken, Gottifredi Maffioli, OBR, Studio Borlenghi, North Sails, Mure a Dritta, OneSails, Quantum Italy, Boris Production, Aster e Spim.

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The Green & The Gray: how to marry nature and city. An exhibition by Carlo Ratti @EDITDX.

Is it possible to bridge nature and cities? Can new technologies help to reconcile these two fundamental dimensions? “The Green & The Gray”, a 2000 sqf interactive exhibition curated by Carlo Ratti Associati at EDIT (Expo for Design, Innovation & Technology) answers to these questions (Toronto, September 28th/October 8th) celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary.

Today, new technologies allow us to bridge the eternal rift between city and nature and contribute to a “Prosperity for All” (main theme of EDIT).
“The Green & The Gray”
features artifacts and initiatives that stand out for their ability to reconcile these two fundamental dimensions of the human condition, envisioning a thriving future for local communities worldwide.
Inside the immersive environment, visitors can explore the exhibition while moving over a floor that gives the impression of walking over water.
The exhibition showcases features 19 projects, selected of 100 international projects presented, among these: Grant Associates’ Supertree Grove, Transsolar’s Reversío, Terreform ONE’s Cricket Shelter, Philippe Rahm’s Spectral light for Artemide, Arctic Food Network by Lateral Office and The Lowline Lab.


Carlo Ratti, director of the Senseable City Lab at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and a founding partner of Carlo Ratti Associati, quoted: “I have always been fascinated by the words of French anarchist geographer Elysée Reclus, at the end of the 19th century he wrote: ‘Man should have the doubled advantage of access to the pleasures of the city […], the opportunities offered for the study and practice of art, and at the same time should be able to enjoy the freedom that lies in nature, and which is explained in the field of its vast horizon’. The Green & The Gray, with its Stendhalian title, aims to explore how, thanks to new technologies, we can finally contribute to Reclus’ vision of marrying city and nature”.

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“Since Marc-Antoine Laugier’s celebration of the ‘primitive hut’, architecture has always acted as a separation between mankind and nature. Could new technologies allow us to think about it in a different way?”, says Emma Greer, Project Manager at Carlo Ratti Associati: “The integration between nature and cities through the use of new technologies has been at the core of many of Carlo Ratti Associati’s recent projects, from the Trussardi Dehors in Milan, for which we developed the first vertical garden in Italy, to our soon-to-be-opened pavilion for FICO Eataly World, which leverages hydroponics cultivations and the Internet of Things to turn visitors into potential farmers”.

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“We are thrilled to be working with Carlo Ratti and his team on this ambitious exhibition, which touches upon some of the world’s most pressing issues and looks at design as integral to how we can make the world a better place for all people”, says Shauna Levy, President and CEO, Design Exchange (Producers of EDIT).

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Biophilia and Mindful Design at Wellness17 (London, 9/5th).

Oliver Heath and Aidan Walker are two of the key speakers for the conference Wellness17 that will address main wellbeing issues in the workplace. From a mental and physiology perspective that pretends to improve our work life balance to a design approach to generate a healthier and more natural work space.
The leading event on wellness in the workplace, will return to London on 5th September 2017 at Credit Suisse.

Oliver Heath talks about Biophilic Design.

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The concept of Biophilia is becoming more present within the workplace as employers and employees alike seek healthier and more balanced working lives. Oliver Heath will discuss “The Science and Style of Biophilic design”. A new research that demonstrates how we can harness the human attraction to nature to reduce stress and aid recuperation by utilising Biophilic design principles. In this way we can make tangible benefits to the workplace including reducing costs such as absenteeism whilst improving productivity, engagement and happiness.

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Oliver Heath is Founder of Heath Design Ltd, an architectural and interior design practice combining three key strands: sustainable design, consumer engagement and communications to inspire the uptake of future thinking in the built environment. He stimulates the adoption of happier, healthier places to live and work. Oliver is currently a Biophilic Design ambassador for Interface flooring.

Photos: courtesy of Interface and HW Style.

Aidan Walker talks about Mindful Design.

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Aidan Walker, Director of Aidan Walker Associates and fellow of the Royal Society of Arts will share his thoughts on “Mindful Design. Principles in practice”. 

Leaders in business, education, hospitality, health and government are paying ever more careful attention to personal wellbeing. It can be about cranking up productivity, generating a new profit centre for guests who mistake luxury for inner solace, or reducing stress.
For workplace professionals and designers, the driving principle is changing from Sustainability to ‘Wellness’. With the ‘Seven C’s of Mindful Design’ Aidan Walker proposes a map of the new professional and personal landscape.

Aidan has practised Hatha Yoga, including a spell teaching, all his adult life, and in his 20s spent six years as a fully dedicated member of the Brahma Kumaris, living and teaching the principles of Raja Yoga. This has led to the publication of the book ‘The Ecology of the Soul’, and he is now working on developing its message to apply specifically to mindfulness in the practice of design.

Wellness17 will also focus on confronting mental health in the workplace, defining best practice, work-life balance, people, place, design and much more. Wellness17 builds on the success of Unwired’s Worktech series of conferences and encompasses all aspects of Wellness including Mind, Body and Spirit, addressing some of the most interesting and challenging subjects such as the stigma of mental health, taming technology, nutrition, design and much more.
Book now at the Wellness17 Early Bird rate and save £100!

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