Milan Design Week 2023 is upon us, and this year’s themes are as exciting as ever. With a renewed focus on sustainability, innovative materials, urban regeneration, and the fascinating potential of artificial intelligence, the event promises to showcase the latest in cutting-edge design. From April 18-23, visitors will have the opportunity to explore an array of exhibitions and events spread throughout different areas of the city, including the renowned Salone del Mobile program.

Whether you’re a seasoned design enthusiast or a curious newcomer, join us as we share what stands out most.

BOTTEGA VENETA

Bottega Veneta has once again collaborated with architect and artist Gaetano Pesce to present a special edition collection of handbags at the brand’s Via Montenapoleone store. The handcrafted bags feature Bottega Veneta’s signature Intrecciato weave with mountains, sunsets, and sunrises designs. Pesce’s first-ever bag designs reflect the artist’s Italian heritage and his current life in the prairies of America.

The bags will be displayed as part of the immersive ‘grotto’ installation, ‘Vieni a Vedere.’

HERMÉS

The historic indoor sports centre, La Pelota Jai Alai, is the backdrop for Hermés’ highly anticipated installation. The French luxury house showcases its latest furniture and home accessories collections, featuring striking pieces embodying the brand’s philosophy of simplicity and elegance. Among the designs are a leather and wood armchair, a reimagined 1930s chair, and a timeless sofa.

The installation reflects Hermés’ commitment to fundamental design principles and its unmatched sophistication.

LOEWE CHAIRS

Centred on the unassuming “stick chair,” this exhibition boasts a collection of 30 antique and new chairs creatively decorated with weaving and other embellishments. The exhibit also includes eight Lloyd Loom chairs from Belgian company Vincent Sheppard, woven using natural fibres and leather in a technique that expands LOEWE’s basketry possibilities.

All chairs and related leather goods are available for purchase at the event.

JIMMY CHOO

Known for their stunning stiletto shoes, Jimmy Choo has partnered with prestigious Venetian glassmaker Venini to create a limited series of vases that reflect the signature Diamond chain motif found across the brand’s latest designs.


The vases come in four shades and are displayed at the Jimmy Choo Milan flagship boutique.

MAISON MATISSE

Maison Matisse, the design studio established by Henri Matisse’s great-grandson to celebrate the artist’s ‘Joie de Vivre’, has enlisted Faye Toogood to create a special collaboration for Milan Design Week 2023.

Unlike previous designers, Toogood has focused on Henri Matisse’s form (particularly his lesser-known black and white drawings in “Dessins: Thèmes et Variations” from 1943) to build on the artist’s joyful confidence and optimism.

LOUIS VUITTON

Louis Vuitton is set to showcase 11 new Objets Nomades by notable designers such as Atelier Oï, Raw Edges, Marcel Wanders, Campana, and Marc Newson’s Cabinet of Curiosities at Milan Design Week 2023. Additionally, the event will feature a special pavilion designed by French architect Marc Fornes, which will host a series of exclusive events.

The Objets Nomades collection, which includes over 60 pieces of innovative and functional furniture and design objects, has been a recurring highlight of the event since its inception in 2012.

IRTHI

Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council is presenting an exhibition called “Echoes of Alchemy” at Fuorisalone 2023, co-curated with Mr Lawrence. The exhibition explores the connection between gastronomic culture, design, and craftsmanship, and features collaborations with Milanese practices and Emirati designers, Reem Saif Almazrouei and Eman Al Rahma.

The Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council aims to empower women through collaborative cultural and creative initiatives while preserving cultural heritage and craftsmanship.

ISSEY MIYAKE

A-POC ABLE ISSEY MIYAKE and Nature Architects have collaborated to showcase the Thinking Design, Making Design: Type-V Nature Architects project during Milan Design Week 2023. They have developed prototypes of wearables, furniture, and lighting fixtures using metamaterials from a single piece of flat fabric, which can be transformed into various forms using a one-step manufacturing process.

One of the prototypes showcased is a jacket that turns from flat to three-dimensional when steamed.

IN COMMON WITH

In Common With, a lighting studio based in Brooklyn will showcase its Flora collection in an exhibition titled Bar Flora during Milan Design Week 2023. The collection is a collaboration with glassware designer Sophie Lou Jacobsen, featuring handblown and mould-blown glass objects inspired by Venetian glassmaking and postmodernism.

The exhibition will debut new additions to the Flora collection, including portable table lights in pewter and brass and a new sandblasted amber colourway.

MARNI

The Luxury fashion brand collaborated with Belgian designer Serax to create their first tableware collection called Midnight Flowers. The 120-piece porcelain set is hand-illustrated and reflects Marni’s unique style under the direction of creative director Francesco Risso.

Risso believes there are commonalities between fashion and tableware, as “both leave space to dialogue, materiality, tactility, and sensorial emotions,” he said in a statement. “By anchoring the new line to these notions, we translated Marni’s creativity through a new means of expression.”

Rand Al-Hadethi is an art, culture, and fashion writer who approaches all her creative endeavours with a penchant for storytelling. She explores the intersection of fashion, culture, and society and sheds light on talent and cultural movements across the Middle East and the world. Rand also publishes a bi-monthly themed substack newsletter called WebWeaver™. To reach Rand, email her at rand@khamsa5.com or follow her on social media @rundoozz.
Close

Language