The structure of the webmagazine WOW! is based on a nomadic, fluid and jelly editorial staff. Jelly is also the structure of the session that offer other subjects or stimuli. The WOW! Jelly Session #6, organized in collaboration with Akzo Nobel and Material Connexion, was attended by: Luisa Bocchietto, ADI; Aldo Bottoli, B&B Colordesign; Christian Tubito, MaterialConnexion; Francesca Valan, Studio Valan; Giusi Ferone, Verde Profilo, Setsu Ito, Studio Setsu & Shinobu Ito; Frida Doveil, Studio Fragile; Marco Pelucchi, Pelma/Poliuretanoè; Claudia Salomoni, Akzo Nobel; Rodrigo Rodriquez, Material Connexion and Siexpo.
Luisa Bocchietto, president ADI opens the debate: “We should consider sustainability not only as environmental impact but as an ethical sustainability identified with the respect for work. As to design sustainability, for a few years ADI Index has been including a specific category for materials”.
Aldo Bottoli, founder of Osservatorio Colore di Lissone and of B&B Colordesign with Giulio Bertagna, asks “What does sensible design mean? Is it sensibility of senses or a significant sensibility? What about its naturalness, is it an organic or a cultural one? Man has two natures connected and not divisible, so design, too, must consider this double track.”
Christian Tubito, project manager at MaterialConnexion, continues “At first innovation is expressed from a technical-performative viewpoint, then aesthetic-formal and later sensorial-perceptive, finally also from the point of view of its identity and value. Now hybrid materials are creating a new perceptive scenery. MC is involved in the first project, LightTouch financed by EC, where the design determines a new material.”
Francesca Valan, color designer, interjects “Materials are like words, they are always coining some new ones, but without a syntax we get incomprehensible sentences; it’s important for companies to organize training courses. The relation between material and user is linked to a correct information, starting from the childhood.”
Giusi Ferone, architect and owner of Verde Profilo, explains “Our core business starts from a natural element, a lichen growing spontaneously, that needs humidity in the air, and we turned it into a “material” through a stabilization process. Not only what is artificial is innovative and it’s important to make this logical jump.”
Setsu Ito, designer (Setsu e Shinobu Ito), supervisor of Frottage Technology, confirms “Now everything we use must be understood, natural materials, too. I made a “minimal” use of light lichen combined with stone, a heavy material, almost a metaphor between western and eastern cultures. The analysis of materials is one of my Master Angelo Mangiarotti’s teachings.”
Frida Doveil, architect (Studio Fragile) remarks “In its first stage, “looking ahead”, innovation of materials was marked by the technological pursue, however now we must cope with a lack of means and languages. The current crisis is changing the rules on a global plane, and either you research top-level materials or you “look backward”, through a hybrid of cultures and make something new from something that already exists.”
Marco Pelucchi, general manager at Pelma (Poliuretanoè) says “Everybody knows polyurethane, but this product underwent a rather fast evolution, so the data we have are incorrect; a new awareness is necessary. Now polyurethane materials are quite advanced compared to the 50s.
Claudia Salomoni, Specification Advisor e Marketing Coordinator Akzo Nobel, specifies “Colour is perception and, in this case, means also sustainability, for our powder paints are eco-friendly and not polluting. We think an awareness of this innovative technology is necessary, often the designer considers the paint only as a liquid component, not knowing the advantages of powder paints.”
Rodrigo Rodriquez, president of Material Connexion and Siexpo, concludes by saying that the study of materials is deep-rooted. Palladio’s first Book of Architecture is about Materials. What Material Connexion can do is to play the role of proactive hinge; to connect manufacturers of materials with the users and create innovation in durable goods, to stimulate creativity. The relation between material and user is deeply related to a correct and consistent information starting from the children who were an active subject of many of out projects. If you work on the theme of materials you must bear in mind the roots enabling us to understand how nature should be respected.”