has been Milan’s
creative epicenter ever since Italian Vogue art director Flavio Lucchini and photographer Fabrizio Ferri brazenly opened studios along a row of abandoned warehouses back in 1983, spawning a creative migration and economic metamorphosis to the once industrial locale. Now fully established and recognized as a cultural hub with designers and artists abound, Zona Tortona plays annual host to newly branded Tortona Design Week, a satellite celebration of the Salone Internazionale del Mobile
, where Heineken-carrying design enthusiasts revel in sun drenched courtyards while DJs spin an eclectic mix of drum and bass. This is where we find a new school of design, ripe with innovation and fervor for doing things different and better than before. Young and established designers alike whose thoughtful design and manufacturing processes consider more than just the bottom line. Here at Zona Tortona 2011, we find design philosophies and principals that will save the world.
The MIKA, by Berlin-based furniture designer Stephanie Jasny, takes its inspiration from a conventional painters trestle and adapts the concept brilliantly to comprise the base of a glass table. Using eight wooden laths connected by extra-strength magnets resulting in ideal weight distribution, the MIKA allows space at the ends to comfortably seat four people for a spacious yet intimate dining experience. With its flat-pack packaging and regionally harvested timber, this table is sustainably delicious.
Designed by Portuguese architect, Jose Melo Ferreira, the Spleen collection of furniture has an understated, timeless aesthetic. Its sculptural beauty overshadows its perplexing structure and ingenious engineering. Made almost entirely from locally manufactured plywood, Spleen uses less than a millimeter of wood veneer, allowing the production of hundreds of furniture pieces from just one fallen tree, without compromising the intended design.