Besides the ubiquitous buzzwords like "handcrafted" and "sustainable," one of the promising trends we noticed at the Salone (and a trip to Holon Design Week) was the emergence of the Middle East design scene. Carwan Gallery and AUS were easily some of my favorite shows at Ventura Lambrate and SaloneSatellite, respectively, and we were also impressed with the TLV Express, a collective of young designers from Israel's second-largest city.
Meanwhile, at the exact opposite end of the warehouse space on Via Massimiliano, some four dozen students from Jersualem's Bezalel Academy of Art and Design exhibited an impressive range of work as "Design Bonanza."Somewhere in the midst of mundane technology, in the desert of everyday materials, within the familiar combinations, gold awaits to be discovered. The term "Bonanza" expresses the alchemic moment: a dream in which a new idea is born, the discovery of a treasure.
The "mining" process of new ideas, like a golden artery within familiar patterns, an opportunity within the material or object, characterizes the chosen batch of works by undergraduate and graduate industrial design students... "Design Bonanza" expresses the experimental spirit of Bezalel, one of the most recognized design academies in the world: creative research which encourages the students to doubt and look for that which is new in the material, shape, and idea, as tools for continued examination of the field of design.
"Design Bonanza" presents the designer's digging tools, as a process of searching for a path between junctions: margins and center, old and new. The metaphoric expression of the process is presented here using three essences: dirt, dust and gold. The first represents the period of the search, the second the moment of explosion, and discovery, and the third, the catharsis process of the discovery, when it transforms into a pure and refined idea.
The "Gold Rush" from the early 20th Century is replaced at the beginning of the 21st Century with a new "Gold Rush", which emanates from the beginning of the decline of the modern financial and social system. However, the real "gold" is in the free imagination, the aspirations, and the exposed, albeit filled with emotion, perspective of new creators. The hidden dreams in "Design Bonanza" try to illustrate the urge, discovery and future products of young designers in Israel.
Itamar Foguel - "Glass Knives for the Post-Modern Neanderthal"The project deals with the art of breaking rock and glass into blades in a traditional manner, as was done by prehistoric man, and connecting it with modern processing technologies of metal and glass. The project raises associations of an apocalyptic world, in which man will create survival tools from broken bottles, manually, without any raw materials or industry.
Ofer Berman - "100% Couio"Glasses made of leather. The glasses were made using a method of bending, for strength and form. The graphics were burned onto the product with the use of laser.
Rami Tareef - "COD Craft-Oriented Design"Rami's project tries to study the differences and similarities between craft and modern innovative design. It examines the borders of hybridization between them, stretches them, and tries to remain with something identifiable with the past. The woven furniture that he created is based on traditional craft and preserves its production values together with massive industrial design.
Vadim Prokofiev - "Arachnophobia"Vadim created a glove with a very long and hard index finger and a "diminutive glass." This set allows people who have arachnophobia to optically "reduce" the size of a spider and thus make it appear less threatening. With the long finger, spiders can be touched without fear. Nothing will happen if the spider catches the finger.
Shelly Simcha - "Hair Brushes"What if we could determine the types of hair growing from our brushes and paintbrushes? Could we give them specific characteristics, following a genetic specification and unique character, which would affect the way we use them and the products?
Hair is the memory of a specific person. Today, with a single Photoshop click, we can change the hair, the character and the memory. I at least hope that if we reach that moment, my brush will not have a "bad hair day."
Guy Mishaly - "Blast Chair by Explosion"In this project, Guy used explosives as a tool; however, he creates objects that are disconnected from their immediate associative context. The series of chairs embodies a new interpretation: the objects begin as geometric volumes made of tin sheets, wired with explosives. The explosion changes
the generic shape into an object with a unique character, while using the explosion element, which will forever create objects that are different from one another.
The making-of video circulated a bit when Mishaly released it last year; check it out after the jump:
Likewise, it's worth checking out the process of Peter Kraft's "Growing Lampshades"When nature illuminates the darkness, it is not done by a simple click. Natural light comes into being by a visual process. It is not only helping you to see well, it is an experience and affects your mood.
This project deals with the issue of light creation. The light and the heat generated thereby create the lampshade as a visible act of deformation.
Lee Oshrat - "Ilturation / Improvisation"Most of the products that surround us ask that we use them for the purpose for which they were designed to work. However, there is the perspective that sees "through" the object the tasks for which it was not designed; a chair that transforms into a ladder for example. These improvisations expose our resourcefulness and laziness and create an enthralling richness. Lee followed this perspective and developed a series of five flexible connectors that wish to embody a paradox: a designed object, which is meant to allow and create improvisation.
Rachel Boxnboim - "Alice"The project began with the decision
to sew a kettle. Rachel uncovered the third dimension of her mother's tea kettle, the classic teapot. The pattern was sewn into a "garment" used as a casting form for the ceramic material. During the drying and burning process, the cloth is incinerated. The ceramic receives the clothing's texture and the appearance of the stitches looks like hardened cloth. The result is useful and surprising tools, with shapes determined by the pattern, influenced by the type of cloth and changing from one tool to the other.
Idan Raizberg - "Ruins Catheter"The modular system of Idan Raizberg is designated to rescue a person trapped under a collapsed structure. The system gets its inspiration from a medical balloon catheter used to expand arteries, and is designed as a capsule, which is put into the opening of the ruins, is opened by inflating an air bag and locked at the size that enables a person to crawl through. After opening the first segment, it is possible to send through it additional units, and by doing so, to create a safe corridor for rescuing people during a disaster. (Model scale 1:3)
Shy Bernstein - "Blitz.k11"The project deals with the clashes between eras and materials. Through the process of casting brass into tree trunks, Shy created one unit: an object in which each material performs its duty and together they create an old- new experience.
Shai Lanir - "RedBeard"The project was created in the shadow of the "helmets law" which hovered over the fashionable heads of the city's cyclists. It was unclear whether the law would be enforced and all cyclists would be forced to be seen in public as if an aerodynamic spaceship had landed on their heads.
Sketches, photographs, wandering, tests, knitting, spilling, smearing, and sewing created three helmets made of hardened wool in epoxy material, with a removable interior sewn from Cordura and cotton, and lined with polyethylene foam combined with polypropylene.
Asaf Alexander - Bur-Da Chess piecesThe project deals with the analysis of shapes from traditional clothing patterns while creating a manipulation using CAD software. Asaf scanned clothing patterns from the "Burda" magazine and used the Revolve function on them, which transforms a contour line into a three-dimensional object.
The chess pieces formed blur the visual values of the familiar pieces such as the differentiation between black and white, and masculinity and femininity. New values of equality and co-existence are cast into the newly formed chess pieces.
Hadas Ilani - "Needle and Thread"The project was born while contemplating on local material, the kind that is always around us and is embedded in our childhood memories. Hadas examined various methods of sewing pine needles into shoes. She created a collection that explores the possibilities of using pine needles as raw material, which allude to the gentle needle mat and the previous lives of the needles.
We also liked a few works that escaped our not-quite-all-seeing camera lens:
Liran Elbaz - "Scissors Glove"The work of Liran Elbaz exposes underground desires, through the experience of destroying infancy clothing. A girl hides in the closet and "nicely" cuts the clothes of her hosts: memory from the closet—grey jacket, striped shirts, blue dress and lace. Light movement and a pair of scissors. The glove with its hidden blades between its fingers is a creating and destroying tool in one.
Baruch Mogilevsky - "Preserved"The project focuses on pressing technology, which revives the ancient use of salt as a preservative. After research experiments, Baruch Mogilevsky discovered that salt undergoes molecular crystallization under high pressure. The combination of these two worlds—the ancient and the modern—allowed Baruch to develop a new method for drying and preserving meat: the meat portions are placed between table salt crystals and pressed into a rigid capsule made of salt. The hardness of the capsule keeps the meat sealed, keeping it dried and preserved, so that it remains edible for years.
» Check out all of our
Salone Milan 2012 coverage