Satellites are ready for take-off, countdown on
By Martina Metzner
Mar 28, 2014

Nowadays there’s any number of places keen to promote young design talents. Take the London Design Festival, for example, or the Biennale Interieur in Kortrijk, Berlin’s DMY Festival, Domaine de Boisbuchet in Lessac, or indeed the D3 Contest at imm Cologne – there is definitely no shortage of formats for up-and-coming talents. And then there’s the Salone Satellite hosted by the Milan Furniture Fair, which is aptly termed the mother of all talent shows, because the chances to attract attention are extremely high. Indeed, it was here that many of today’s star designers were discovered.

The countdown’s on, the satellites are ready for take-off. As in previous years, some 650 young designers (i.e., under 35 years of age) will present themselves and their projects on around 2,800 square meters of exhibition space in the trade-fair halls in Rho. In the end, the top three projects showcased will be honored with the “Salone Satellite Award”, which is being bestowed for the fifth time this year. It makes no difference whether a budding talent hails from Italy, the United States or India, nor whether it is luminaires, chairs or “smart furniture” they are presenting – the selection is vast in range and thrives on its fresh and international mix.

We at Stylepark are proud to be able to preview some of the projects and present seven designers whose output is well worth making the trip to Milan to see it in the flesh.

Hanna Emelie Ernsting, Frankfurt/Main: ”Red Riding Hood”. Photo © Hanna Emelie Ernsting
wrapped up
Hanna Emelie Ernsting
Hanna Emelie Ernsting from Frankfurt/Main is dedicated to “storytelling in Product Design”, in theoretical but also in practical terms. Indeed, the pieces she creates are incredibly versatile and certainly entertaining. Take, for instance, the chairs and sofas that come with extra-large quilted fabric covers that are just perfect for snuggling into and dreaming away. Or her dinky “Pet Stools” which have the look-and-feel of oversized teddy bears and are still very comfy to sit on. Her approach is charming and funny – and yes, it tells stories, too, of warmth, coziness and please-do-not-disturb.

Stand D27 (together wie Sarah Böttger)
Sarah Böttger, Wiesbaden, created the carpet together with design colleague Hanna Emelie Ernsting. Photo © Sarah Böttger
neatly arranged
Sarah Böttger
She thrives on being organized: Sarah Böttger, who studied at Offenbach’s Academy of Art and Design and the University of Art and Design in Helsinki, makes furniture, vitreous objects and carpets, which always strike you as extremely well-structured, sober, neat and carefully thought-through. Whether it’s timber boxes for kitchen manufacturer Boffi, glass containers for Menu or a quilted loden carpet titled "Dune", which she is going to showcase in Milan: Today, Böttger’s designs already have what it takes to become true classics.

Stand D 27 (together with Hanna Emelie Ernsting)
Naoki Ono and Yuuki Yamamoto = Yoy. Photo © Yoy
Books with flowers growing inside them, sheets that are stuck to the wall, small cutting boards balancing on the edge of a table, and paintings you can sit in: friends and design partners Naoki Ono and Yuki Yamamoto, both from Tokyo, founded their joint studio YOY in 2011 and just love to play with illusion and reality, taking both to the limits in the process. It’s the pair’s third time at the Salone Satellite and we can hardly wait to see what new surprises they will have in store for us.

Stand D43
Florian Kallus and Sebastian Schneider – together they are Kaschkasch: “Kalimero“. Photo © Kaschkasch
Strictly speaking, the two boys from Cologne can no longer be considered an insider tip: Florian Kallus and Sebastian Schneider (aka Kaschkasch) have already worked for manufacturers such as Menu and Schönbuch, as well as for retailer Magazin. Their designs are simple, clever and concise: Take “Scoop”, for example, a table and chair made of laminated oak wood, which calls to mind the sober aesthetic of past school furniture; or “Raft”, a system that playfully combines round timbers; or indeed luminaires such as “Konichiwa” or “Kalimero”, whose form and function are simply – lucid. So much so that the latter, together with “Plank”, a small wall-fitted shelf unit, are going to be launched by manufacturers at the Salone. Which manufacturers you’d like to know? Come and see!

Stand B32
Thomas Schnur from Cologne: “Rubber Table“. Photo © Thomas Schnur
one for everyday
Thomas Schnur
Items such as a forest ranger’s bench, a Monobloc chair or a plunger (or suction cup) may seem nothing special to most of us. For Cologne-based budding designer Thomas Schnur, on the other hand, they are of extraordinary interest. A trained cabinetmaker with a degree in Product Design, Schnur takes everyday objects, modifies them and/or places them in a different context. For instance, he designed a version of a park bench that can be mass produced and disassembled into its components. He extended a Monobloc chair into a full bench, and arranged plungers into a rubber table that thanks to the suction quality of the cups attaches equally to the wall or ceiling. Yet for Thomas Schnur these designs are more than gimmicks; his actual intention is to get users to “change their perspective” on things. Post Schnur, we can kiss goodbye to everyday life.

Stand C25

Tsukasa Goto: “Mademoiselles“. Photo © Tsukasa Goto
Tsukasa Goto
What happens if a Japanese and an Italian designer get together? They set up a studio! As happened with Tsukasa Goto and Marco Guazzini, who met in New York and launched “Noto” in Milan in 2010. Today Tsukasa is back working on his own again – but continues to live in Milan. His designs are testimony to his magnificent feel for forms, materials and functions. An example is the “Mademoiselles” shelf (jointly with Guazzini), which is brought out by Oficinanove and emulates prima ballerinas working out on the barre. Or his latest object, a spaghetti measuring object made of marble. On balance, you get the best ingredients from Japan and Italy dished up in a single item.

Stand D9
Siren Elise Wilhelmsen: “Memory Carpet”. Photo © Siren Elise Wilhelmsen
Siren Elise Wilhelmsen
Gold for Siren Elise Wilhelmsen! Crowned as the German Design Award’s 2013 Newcomer no less. The Norwegian designer, who commutes between Bergen and Berlin, makes furniture and objects with a twist in the tail. One of the reasons for the deeper meaning behind her creations may be that she studied Art History in Bergen before she switched and embarked on a degree in Industrial Design under Axel Kufus in Berlin. You can tell from her designs that Wilhelmsen had an excellent teacher in Kufus: “Parasitz” is a portable seat made of slats that can be wrapped around the trunk of a tree to transform it into a very decent bench indeed. Or take “You+Me”, a dynamo-powered luminaire that runs for 30 minutes after you have wound it. Last but not least, there is the “Memory Carpet” that can be draped around or over a chair. The reasoning? The chair stood on the carpet for so long that the two of them decided they might as well spend the rest of their lives together. It’s not going to be the last time that Siren Elise Wilhelmsen bags gold for her output.

Stand A23