The global spotlight shines on the new Philippine style as the Center for International Trade and Exhibitions (CITEM), through Design Philippines return to the April 2016 edition of Salone Internazionale del Mobile with a grand showcase by a team of exemplary brands.
The exhibition set from April 12 to 17 at Milan, Italy, promises to be more than just a presentation of furnishings and décor as it invites viewers to examine the objects on display and more closely, the narratives that lie hidden in the details.
For this edition, four established brands and a rising designer are the master storytellers who investigate materiality, form and methodologies in articulating a fresh, contemporary design perspective.
Italian transplant Carlo Cordaro holds court in Cebu where his own brand, Atelier A serves as a vehicle for the province’s famed handwork, as well as Carlo’s creative explorations of wood’s multi-faceted character and various craft techniques.
He nods to the Art Deco era’s sparkling spirit with a series aptly titled “1930,” a delicate composition of pure lines, quiet colors and discreet textural highlights made from laminated palm inlays. It is a series that can only be described in Carlo’s native tongue as molto elegante.
For its Salone Internazionale debut, Zacarias 1925 Home pulls from various disciplines
such as pop culture, cinema, architecture and visual arts for its tableaux of small furniture and home accessories. Though thematically diverse, wicker weaving is undeniably the heart of the brand’s design philosophy and it shines through the collection’s exuberant explosion of colors, forms and bold patterns.
Sustainable style comes to the fair with Maze furniture collection made from Permacane—a unique, patented rattan multi-layer lamination that is exclusively available to the company for furniture and décor pieces. Viewers will witness Maze response to the clamor for conscientious living with a collection of stylish furniture clad in a revolutionary surface cover. The series also reveals Permacane’s versatile applications as veneer for the narrow spindles of one set of furnishings and as a sleek surface cladding for the graceful planes of another grouping of chairs and tables.
Another first-time exhibitor is A. Garcia Crafts, which will illuminate its dexterity with metal and plastic in a tightly focused assemblage of chairs. Clarity of form is expressed in the pieces’ rigorous, skeletal frames which also lend a dynamic sculptural quality that changes the mood of the spaces they occupy as day shifts to night.
Last to be featured is rising Filipino talent Kit Blancas. She introduces her award-winning family of luminaires called “Bahandi” to the fair’s audience. The young designer’s dignified restraint is evident in the considered volumes and the precise incisions on the lighting series’ resin surface, as well as the pared-down palette of solid colors. The alien-like forms’ mysterious and whimsical vibe invites viewers to inhabit a conjured other-worldly realm.
Overall, the show represents a powerful collective statement that also reveals the remarkable transition of Philippine style.