Each year 300 stands are erected for design schools, young designers and studios at the rear of halls 22-24 at Salone del Mobile. While its a long march from Hall One of the main entrance to the fairgrounds, its always worth the effort. Here you find a mixture of young established designers who have been continuously innovative in their work over many years such as Dutch designers David Derksen and RENS along with total newcomers. The rules for Salone Satellite are simple: each designer needs to be no more than 30 years of age and each entrant can only exhibit three times. The rest is up to the judges who except or reject entrants on their merit. Salone Satellite was established in 1998 which makes this year quite special and to celebrate the platform had a fabulous new look at the fair and a held a major exhibition of work from the last twenty years at Fabbrica del Vapore entitled Salone Satellite – 20 Years of New Creativity curated by Beppe Finessi.
The long wall of Salone Satellite 2017. The folding signage had a great dimensional quality in combination of plywood and shades of blush – the de rigour colour of the Salone (again). Inside Salone Satellite the 20th anniversary installation showcased many of the designers who have had products put into production over the years – the chair in red below is the ‘Astra’ by Cory Grosser, the pendant lights are ‘Fluid Edition’ by Nao Tamura and Cristina Celestino’s ‘Alice’ table lamps in exotic marbles are shown at the back.
While its true that the stands of certain designers who had exhibited previously stood out immediately, like every year there were some new faces that really raised the bar. Design daily was particularly taken by the lights of Greek designer Chris Basias and the refined minimalism of Japanese studio Daisuke Kitagawa but there were plenty of other great presentations spread across the stands and those that are highlighted in this post are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. What is so nice about Salone Satellite is that you can talk to the designers directly about the whys and hows of their design process. It’s hugely stimulating and grounding at the same time because you immediately realise the amount of effort that goes into designing these prototypes – sometimes years of research has been involved.