The Charme Group >>.. A second showing away from the main fair in Tortona’s Milano Design Village added more clout to the ailing Tortona district again. The Milano Design Village’s 3000 sqm showroom showed the Charme Groups main brands – Poltrona Frau, Cassina and Cappellini.
Comfort, and the quality of both leather and detail, are the distinguishing traits of the new Poltrona Frau collection, numbering a total of almost 40 pieces, ranging from the modular sofa Bretagne (designed by the technical office) to the rounded forms of Bebop by Cini Boeri.
At Milano Design Village in via Savona 56, Giulio Cappellini expresses his personal vision of design. “I think that the real trend this year is seeking to produce absolutely normal objects that meet the needs of the public but that are well-designed.” Among the new proposals, there is a limited edition series of furnishings made in collaboration with Walt Disney. Some of Cappellini’s iconic products have been revisited in an ironic key to highlight the designer’s love for colour and creativity, which are shared elements of both brands,
Looking forward as well as back, Cassina also launched Cloth by Jehs+Laub – an intriguingly simple and comfortable fibreglass armchair with leather upholstery. A 1945 design by Franco Albini gives life to Canapo, the rocking chair (with foldable cushion) you can carry; a new colourful look for a great classic by Le Corbusier, renamed LC2010
.Poltrona Frau reissued Guglielmo Ulrich’s Willy chair of 1937 in a range of surprisingly bright colours and Cassina reissued Franco Albini’s Canapo rocking chair from 1945. . Giulio Cappellini hit the nail on the head saying, “The most important thing in design right now is innovation,” and his brand’s own show of unfeasibly constructed aluminium bar stools by Todd Bracher and Raw Edges’ “crumpled” wooden stools and benches proved he’s willing to put his money where his mouth is.
While authenticity is the key concept behind the 2010 Cassina line, “Less is more. Less is green” is the motto the company has chosen to present its new projects. Aire, by Piero Lissoni, is a light, destructured sofa – whose steel frame, technical fabric upholstery and modular elements enable complete disassembly – weighing 30 % less than similar products. Extreme simplicity makes another design by Lissoni stand out: the chair Treunotre. Comfort and a sinuous line for the armchair Cloth by Jehs + Laub, combining form and function. . Both the sofa and the ‘Sessantuna. Tavolo Italia 2011’ project, created for the nearing 150th anniversary of the Unity of Italy, are by Gaetano Pesce.
“Fluid, almost immaterial projects alternate with products of extraordinary solidity”. In the name of balance, yet acknowledging a certain taste for contrasts, Giulio Cappellini lists the names of the creators of the latest design novelties for the third brand of the group. There are veterans such as Marcel Wanders (with the Tulip Armchair, Drain Table and Flashback chair) and Jasper Morrison (with the Bel Air armchair and Camp sofa). But there’s also room for young talent: Todd Bracher, with his stool Alodia, and Raw Edge with Tailored Wood, a series of products reminiscent of creased paper. Last but not least, Swedish designer Martin Vallin: still a student, he presents The Secret Clubhouse: an inspired, enveloping armchair, made of discarded pieces of timber found in the Copenhagen school where he is graduating. “A reference to my childhood – explains the designer – and to the tree-house we dreamed of as children: a retreat for secluded relaxation, a protective shell in which to set your imagination free”.