Honoring the End of Ventura Projects by Celebrating Its Legacy

Design Milk stands with our friends and partners at Ventura Projects and especially its founder + art director, Margriet Vollenberg, who has had to make the impossible and heartbreaking decision to end Ventura Projects due to the global impact that COVID-19 has left in the design world. This year would have marked the 11th edition of Ventura Projects during Milan Design Week 2020 and we were looking forward to what we’re sure would have been another successful event for discovering new designers, independent studios, bold ideas and innovative projects. Ventura Projects leaves behind an incomparable legacy for giving designers and brands a premiere platform to support their ideas and launch their creative dreams. We thank Margriet and Ventura projects for all they have done to support global design and appreciate the media partnership we’ve shared together over the years.

To honor the legacy Ventura Project leaves behind in sharing emerging designers with the world, we want to share 10 designers that would have participated in this year’s Ventura Future or Ventura Centrale during Milan Design Week, to remind ourselves and anyone reading that it’s going to be up to the design community to help the world adapt to a new normal and a better future. Margriet summed it up best:

More than ever, to cope with this crisis and the aftermath the world is in need of the creativity, playfulness and ingenuity that design can offer.

Without further ado, here are 10 new designers and studios we think should be on your radar.

Photo by Joe Rasera

BJØRNE: “Ljós [ljɔus], which means “light” in Icelandic, is a pendant lamp made for softly lighten any space. Available in two sizes and shapes, 60 cm or 35 cm long, Ljós is composed of 28 birch plywood laser cut sheets assembled through the joint of two gears in the middle of the supporting structure without any glue or screw. This solution allows Ljós’s lampshade to be fully reversible and gives the user the option to pick between two different lamp layouts.”

Catrinel S.tudio: “Morfoza is a unique and versatile luminaire using the light spectrum to create mesmerizing effects. Our moods and needs are constantly changing. The luminaire is just as versatile as we are: it metamorphoses from a minimal monochrome light source into a full burst of colorful dynamic motifs.”

Photo by Amadej Mravlak

FOLDS: “FOLDS encompasses the visual as well as the methodological principles based on which our products are made. Two dimensional steel plate acquires volume through the laser-cutting method and the principle of folding. If rotated sideways, items themselves give the impression of dematerialization to 2D symbols. Restrained and stark design allows material to speak for itself in order to utilize their aesthetic and functional maximum, reinforcing the playful character of the items.”

Folks: “The purpose is to give another dimension to the everyday objects that surround us: put on a pedestal a functional piece like a work of art. The forms are free, sculptural, cutouts, even primitives and the materials raw and natural. The objects are reinventing themselves as a sculpture or a totem!”

Frattinifrilli: “TRIDO is a multi-function object created by joining 2 aluminum sheets folded in triangular shapes. The project is developed on 2 sizes and each unit can be used in 4 positions, allowing many purpose options: low /high stool, small bench, side table and magazine rack. The joining bolts are clearly visible to highlight the construction principle and complement the minimal appearance.”

Haberdashery: “At Haberdashery we believe that our imagination plays an important role in engaging with each other and the spaces we cohabit through the power of light. This playful fascination with observing the world allows us to weave originality into our designs, creating dialogues through rich poetic narratives that challenge perceptions of what lighting design is capable of.Using this approach we break the mould of the contemporary vernacular with unique lighting designs that deliver longevity by employing timeless poetic narrative rather than following fashions or trends.

Photo by Anna Giulia Gregori

Hola Studio: “We are HOLA, a young design studio led by an emotional design approach that focuses on 3D printed light products. We design playful lamps that evoke sympathetic emotions, recall personal stories, and create positive experiences. By creating an emotional affection between the user and the used object, the object itself acquires an additional value. Our goal is to influence consumers to have a more emotional connection towards everyday objects, to rethink the detached habit of using ordinary items and to reconsider the idea of mere consumerism.”

Kodai Shimizu: “Home appliances have been becoming increasingly complicated, and therefore they tend to be discarded. However, if they have integrated craft techniques, they can be repaired with added value, and handed down to the next generation. In response to the trend of mass consumption, sewing is implemented for assembling the appliances so that they will be easily disassembled and repaired when they are broken.”

Rocco Giovannoni: “InMergo is a patent-pending audio technology, the first availing of liquid as sound media (instead of air). Born as a research on human listening capabilities, the designer Rocco Giovannoni was able to generate a unique omnidirectional surround experience by also giving richness and haptic feedback to the low-end. It overcomes typical problems of traditional bone conduction technology – such as comfortability, sound dispersion and frequency range, – while, by bypassing the middle and outer ear, it is able to offer a greater listening experience also to people with several forms of hearing loss and cochlear implants.”

Studio Kali: “Sama furniture collection offers a functional simplicity that adds a unique and elegant touch to its environment. Inspired by the poetry of whirling costumes worn in Sufi ceremonies, the design plays with the geometry of conic sections and makes use of metal bending processes to create simple and authentic pieces of furniture. The pieces in the collection are handmade by wood and metal artisans from Istanbul. The collection has won Silver A’ Design Award and Design Turkey Superior Design Award.”