Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Materials Trending at the Maison&Objet 2016

Maison&Objet, the renowned French trade fair and among the world’s three most important interior design events, recently concluded its first edition of this year’s bi-annual tradeshow. As a benchmark for global industries, the fair offers a multifaceted glimpse into excellence and innovation in the world of luxury, design and interior decoration.

The highlights of this year’s Maison& Objet include innovative surface treatments and finishes, with materials poised to be one of the most exciting areas for 2016.

The fair showcased a wide range of cutting edge materials for the first time, which is a twist in trends seen in previous years. Even tastemakers were astounded by the surprising materials that made this year’s fair distinct from the rest. Designers no longer adhered to the conventional means of using materials that were already available. In fact, they took a different approach and produced their own raw materials. Naturally, new looks and applications were key components of the fair.

Here’s a quick re-cap of everything you should know:

Jonas Edvard’s Gesso project. Edvardunveileda collection of side tables and lamps made from limestone. With his basis in practicing design and material exploration, he previously pioneered the production of chairs made from a mixture of Danish seaweed and recycled paper, as well as lamps made from plant fibres and mushroom mycelium, a particularly useful form of fungus. This year for Maison&Objet, he unveiled a composite of limestone powder mixed with an Eco binder, and obtained a biodegradable material that he calls "synthetic, recyclable stone," which is hard enough to make any type of furniture, in any given colour. He has molded it and used it in smoothly-polished side tables to show the diversity of its texture. His main aim here was to minimize ecological footprint and take sustainable measures with these unorthodox materials.

Bonaldo Medly (left) and Bonaldo Greeny (right)
Heard of wealth out of waste? “Newspaperwood” is similar. This material is prepared by gluing newspapers together and then cutting them to reveal lines that are similar to a wood grain or the rings of a tree, resembling the aesthetic of real wood. The newspaper log can be cut, milled and sanded into boards just as any type of wood. As the grey of the paper mixes with the colours of the prints, the surface takes on a soft pastel tone, and the thin layers evoke the texture of wood grain. Dutch design studio Vij5, along with Dutch designer Mieke Meijer developed this idea and presented this wood-like material made from recycled newspapers in its tabloid desks and tables.

Another material trend made its presence evident in a collection of screens, tables and planters woven with strips of chestnut bark launched by a French company. The feel and look of this material is visually graphic but also textured.

Vintage, stonewashed stainless steel showcased the interests of Japanese exhibitors Tsubamesanjo as they presented it in their range of tablewares. Other brands also launched collections with the same vintage finish, making this an emerging trend that may last for some time to come.
Other materials that were a highlight in the interior realm include the iridescent finishes with mysterious and light-reflecting qualities, seen in a range of decorative vessels.

Tokyo by Tonin Casa (top) and Canova by Alf Italia (bottom)
When it comes to tables, a range of marble tops made a striking appearance at the fair bringing a distinctive, contemporary aesthetic to the timeless material. Handcrafted techniques were used to combine selected marbles in a striking and graphic pattern. Bases are powder coated in colours from the palette and combined with precision machined brass feet, hand brushed and finished by craftsmen.

Maison&Objet has clearly offered the trends in material and the unearthing of new products. A platform where multi-multicultural crossroads met and showcased their excellence and innovation in contemporary living that will soon appear in the homes of France and around the world.


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