Design – OMA occupies secret underground spaces, Ingo Maurer defies gravity with light, while Hermès goes ‘beton brutiful’ at La Pelota. We selected 12 mesmerising installations taking over historical palazzos, courtyards, and monuments at Milan Design Week 2023.
- RELATED STORIES: Read more about Milan Design Week 2023 on Archipanic.
GROHE SPA, Health Through Water
April 17-23. Via Brera, 28 [Map].
Bathroom furniture brand GROHE launches its premium sub-brand GROHE SPA with a water installation reflecting Pinacoteca di Brera’s stunning architecture. Four immersive cubes reveal the brand’s cutting-edge bathroom designs: its pioneering 3D metal-printed products, bespoke Atrio and Allure Brilliant Private Collections, trend-leading GROHE Colors, and a multi-sensory experience for the brand’s shower solutions.
Walk the Talk – Moving Energy by Italo Rota and Carlo Ratti
April 17-23. Orto Botanico di Brera, via Brera, 28/Via Fiori Oscuri, 4 [Map].
Italo Rota and CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati for Eni Plenitude transform the Brera Botanical Garden into a large living game board. Hundreds of squares, including multimedia ones, trace a path that winds among trees and plants of the Garden, creating luminescence and sound effects that change the space during hours of the day. Developed with a game designers collective—Blob Factory Gaming Studio, Walk the Talk addresses issues such as the transformation of mobility in a sustainable way.
Dry Days, Tropical Nights by Agostino Iacurci for glo™
April 17-23. Largo Treves, 1 [Map].
glo™, together with artist, illustrator, and graphic designer Agostino Iacurci presents Dry Days, Tropical Nights at Palazzo Treves. The large installation invites visitors to explore the revamped 1930s architecture and to look at how our planet could become and how we can build a better future. Dry Days, Tropical Nights marks one of the stages of the itinerant art project glo™ for art, created to support art and spread culture, favouring the democratisation of the artistic experience.
Beyond the Surface by OMA x Solid Nature
April 18-23. Spazio Cernaia, Via Cernaia, 1 [Map].
Dutch material manufacturer SolidNature returns to Milano, occupying secret spaces in the Brera Design District with an installation by Rem Kolhaas’ studio OMA titled Beyond the Surface. On display will be a collection of bespoke stone creations designed by various designers, including Sabine Marcelis, Iranian artist Bita Fayyazi and others. OMA’s immersive dreamscape draws parallels between the formation and quarrying of stone and the realisation of dreams.
Trame by Stark at Milan’s aquarium
April 18-23, h. 09-19. Acquario Civico, Via Gladio, 2 [Map].
Even if the sea is 200 km away from the sea, Milan has a great public aquarium in Parco Sempione. This year, Stark, a leading manufacturer of multimedia installations and interactive experiences, takes over the museum’s art-deco building with the Trame (Weaves) exhibition. Visitors are plunged into an immersive and interactive choral installation with projections and soundscapes to remind us that our lives are intertwined with those of other beings living in diverse and connected habitats.
Ingo Maurer is back
April 18-23. Porta Nuova gates in Piazza Principessa Clotilde, [Map].
After its founder’s death, German lighting company Ingo Maurer returns to Milan with a new collection, an exhibition, and an urban light installation at the gates of Porta Nuova. Here, a 30m-long fluorescent carpet runs under the square’s central arch. Above, a reflecting surface seems to float in mid-air thanks to a system of ropes. The result is an enchanting game of colours and reflections that constantly changes through the day. The gates host an exhibition with the brand’s iconic pieces and new collections.
La Macchina Impossibile by Piero Lissoni.
April 16-26. Via Festa del Perdono, 7 [Map].
Piero Lissoni presents a large-scale installation for the San Lorenzo shipyard at the Università Statale for the Design Re-Evolution event by INTERNI Magazine. Titled La Macchina Impossibile – The Impossible Machine -the pavilion narrates the future of yacht propulsion. The metal sculpture blends high technology with skilled manual labor. It consists of an oversized mechanism powered by the new hydrogen technology from green methanol that the shipyard is developing for power generation in its boats.
Domino Act by Audi
April 16-26. Corso Venezia, 11 [Map].
Design can trigger a domino effect in terms of sustainability. Gabriele Chiave with Controvento created the Domino Act installation for Audi at the INTERNI Magazine Design Re-Evolution event. Set up in the majestic square of the Quadrilatero by Portrait Milano; the installation consists of 22 monoliths with a reflective surface surrounding the Audi Skysphere concept car. Domino Act comes to life at night thanks to lights and sounds, with soundscapes created in collaboration with Guido Smider.
Human Mandala by Sara Ricciardi
SIAM, Via Santa Marta 18 [Map].
Sara Ricciardi celebrates the interconnectedness of human beings with the HUMAN MANDALA installation in the heart of 5Vie. A series of real human bodies are arranged in a circular mandala formation. Each individual stands naked and vulnerable yet connected to the others through a network of root-like structures like a mycelium organism. As viewers move around the installation, they are able to see the bodies from different angles, revealing new connections and patterns.
Silent Hollows by Richard Yasmine
April 17-23, h.10.30-19.30. Via Santa Marta, 18 [Map].
Lebanese architect and designer Richard Yasmine presents an immersive installation that pays tribute to Nature with poetic functional objects, virtual reality, and NFTs. 3D-printed organic-shaped mirrors, tables, and wall-mounted lights recreate an interstellar scenery or a celestial scenography, with an immersive three-dimensional VR experience transporting the viewer from a dramatic to an alternative mystic planetary landscape. Through DeepSoundMe’s advanced technology, Jasmine harnesses artificial intelligence to create the first collection of NFTs generated from biometric data linked to the artistic experience.
Shaped by Water by Google with Lachlan Turczan
April 18-23. Garage 21, Via Archimede, 26 [Map].
Google has teamed up with water, light, and sound artist Lachlan Turczan to create Shaped by Water, an exhibition exploring water as a source of design inspiration. A series of installations mix water with light and sound. Pools of water in mirrored sculptures ripple away, responding to nearby visitors’ movement. Gaze upward at the ceiling as if you were in a planetarium to enjoy reflections of wavy light patterns created by musical vibrations running through liquid dance and spin.
Shaped by Air by Lexus
April 18-22, h. 11-19. April 23, h.11-18. Superstudio Più, Via Tortona, 27 [Map].
Getting used to the automotive of the future, naturally electric, which does not pollute, does not make noise, drives autonomously, scans obstacles, warns of dangers, provides security, and is constantly connected. Lexus has been researching this for 15 years and will be at the Superdesign Show 2023 with Shaped by Air by architect Suchi Reddy, who, inspired by the craftsmanship of the Lexus Electrified Sport coupé, gives a scale interpretation of it, shaped by light and surrounded by vibrant leaf-like sculptures.