Studio toogood

Milan Furniture Fair Favourites 2012

Here are a few examples of the stand out works I saw during the Salone del Mobile. My focus during the show was based upon colour sound and experience. The works hi lighted here are designed spaces that have been created to evoke an atmosphere or emotion.
There was so much to see during the week it was impossible to travel around and catch everything particularly when you are exhibiting yourself. Sasha and I decided to try and get around to see other shows in the mornings and spend the rest of the day over in MOST.

In Cloister two Molo design a collaborative design and production studio from Vancouver were exhibiting this temporal space that was specifically designed for the museum space. In the centre of these panels a sound system was embedded creating a soft enveloping wave of ambience combined with this incredible vibrance resonating from the yellow walls. 
The moment I encountered this work I knew I would be revisiting several more times during the show. It was interesting to see how the work changed with the extreme change in the weather conditions and light. It felt like a small haven.... what ever seemed to be happening in and around the cloisters Molo managed to instantly slow you down and I wanted to savour this experience as I  encountered the space. 

Moroso was hosting a project designed by the Chinese architect Zhang Ke called Hidden Dragon. The space was flooded with red lighting and the central room opened up revealing a series of screens hugging the edge of the room with lucid black ink brush marks. 
In the centre was a large red upholstered seat. Designed to sit alone or together to recline into the seat and for several people to sit separately but still be able to engage in conversation.

Studio Toogood at MOST

La Cura Studio Toogood 

I managed to visit La Cura on Sunday morning the last day of the show. It lasted around half an hour and I managed to slip into the room at the very last moment just as the performance began. 

The 40 chairs were positioned around the edge of room each one had been wrapped in different materials symbolising protection the view into centre of the room focussed on the pavilion. 

Obviously the evidence of clay was my driving force for attending as well wanting to see how successful this space or environment that had been designed to force you to stop or slow down. 

I was filled with intrigue surrounding not only the space but the aesthetic the atmosphere, the sound and once fully immersed in the experience I was blown away....
It had to be a combination of everything the lighting the sound the ritualistic nature of the piece there was a distinct Japanese feel in both the colour white and simplistic tools used. (Zen gardening instantly came to mind !)
The sterile clean functionality of the enamel bowls and trolleys used to present the clay the pace at which the performance unravelled always hinted at slowing down and to take a little more time.

There was a specific language attached to the entire experience 'the caretakers' 'the cures' 'the garden' 'protection' 'dressing'
It hints at modern day healing or spiritual healing. Designed for the senses as opposed to the physical although there was a physical aspect attached to the experience. Engaging with the clay a material that can often be associated with school as it's normally one of the first materials children tend to use due to it's ease it's a welcoming material that brings people together in the sense that is impossible not to make something it can be rolled flattened squeezed moulded it doesn't have to represent any kind of form it can be used as a tool to simply communicate a emotion or mood. In that respect it was interesting to see how others were responding to the material. At this stage it became very instinctive some people touched it with hesitation others were straight in. As a ceramic designer this process was like second nature to me however, I was wondering whether I may have been too precious because it was familiar compared to those who have had little or no contact with clay In the past. As the week progressed the small clay cures were carefully and respectfully taken away and added to the garden making a large scale installation or sculpture.

Lighting Installation in Zona Tortona.
It'a magic take a look...