Kama Sex and Design

Kama_VaginaWall-thumb-620x411-52036My new article for Cool Hunting.

The products of design are often objects of desire, but to what extent can this drive be pushed? The exhibition “Kama Sex and Design” ventures an answer to that weighty question with an analysis of the visual representation of sexual motifs. The starting point is Kama, the Indian god of sexual pleasure, who welcomes visitors into the exhibition space at the Triennale in Milan. The route runs between contemporary objects, classic design, site-specific installations and photographs.

Curator Silvana Annicchiarico tells us that the show “aims to be an exhibition on objects which have the genitals and sexual organs as morphological matrix, but also on the body that maintains sexual relations with other bodies. It is an exhibition that investigates how sex is present in everyday objects.” To achieve this goal, the exhibition is divided into eight sections: Archetypes, Priapus, Origin du Monde, Breasts, Buttocks, Orifices, Couplings and Erotic Food Design, and is accompanied by an ambitious central installation entitled “Anatomical Atlas of the Erotic Refined Body.” Among Etruscan sculptures, Greek vases and Roman artifacts we find very well known works like the Mae West sofa by Salvador Dalí, as well as provocative pieces such as “The Great Wall of Vagina” by Jamie McCartney, a relief of 400 plaster casts of female genitalia.

The exploration begins with a room by Andrea Branzi, in which the relationships between classical and modern, and sex and death, are made explicit through skulls and reproductions of classical female nudes. It continues with a black monolith by Lapo Lani, located in a dark space covered with obscene writing viewed by flashlights.

In another room Nendo‘s “Shivering Bowls” resembling female breasts move as their name suggests, moving in an unexpectedly poetic manner with a constant flow of air. The softness of Nendo’s work contrasts with the hard marble and metals in Betony Vernon‘s installation where mysterious objects of the body (and a provocatively phallic marble chair) are presented in a red space reminiscent of an elegant brothel.

Other designers and artists whose work is on display include Nacho CarbonellNigel CoatesMatali CrassetItalo RotaPiero Fornasetti, Ettore Sottsass, Gaetano Pesce. “Kama Sex and Design” runs through 10 March 2013 and is prohibited for persons under 18 years.

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Regenesi Sustainable Products

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My new article from Coolhunting.com

Regenesi, a young Italian company founded by Maria Silvia Pazzi, aims to design, manufacture and market original objects produced from recycled materials.

Focused on maintaining the same aesthetic and fine quality of Italian design but adding sustainability, Regenesi products are both physically and ethically attractive. While the range spans household objects to fashion accessories, it’s united by the same novel use of post-consumer materials such as aluminum, glass, plastic, leather and cardboard—all treated with a special processing technique that allows each material to remain identical to its raw form. The care for quality, good taste and beauty—which often lie outside of the eco universe—is a main concern for Regenesi.

To keep with the Regenesi mantra that “there is no contradiction between being function, eco-compatible and beautiful,” well-known international designers, such as Matali Crasset, Marco Ferreri, Giulio Iacchetti, Denis Santachiara, Setsu and Shinobu Ito create the collection. In the true spirit of “sustain and be sustainable,” Regenesi also gives space to young designers, both through projects with Italy’s design schools—such as the Polytechnic University of Turin and the University of Venice—and the international community through their website. Products are available online at Regenesi website and at temporary showrooms in major European cities.

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