origins: five vases reflecting culture and traditions

The students of the Master’s Course in Italian Product Design of Istituto Marangoni The Milano School of Design, led by the teacher of Design Development, Lorenzo Palmieri, participated in a contest held by Elle Decor Italia and TID – The Interior Design network to realise a collection of vases of both contemporary and international character.

The theme of the contest, ‘Origins’, was suggested by the extremely varied cultural provenances of the students, coming from Italy, China, Turkey, Spain, and Lebanon. Their research, deliberately personal and introspective, focused therefore on the atmosphere, culture and traditions typical of their country of origin, source of inspiration in the choice of shapes and materials.

Five projects were judged by the commission members – Cristina Morozzi, Francesco Tursini and Alessandro Valenti – who appreciated their great originality, sophisticated aesthetics and decidedly modern design. The winner was Me2 Vases by Matteo Agati, an Italian student of Sicilian father and German-Swiss mother who chose to match lava rock and rounded lines with wood and geometric shapes, to reflect his mixed origins in a family of decomposable vases, creating together a harmonious hybrid.

Mirror Mountain, the vase designed by Chinese Xianglu Yu, was instead inspired by the image of petals floating on the water surface, conveying the idea of harmonious relationship between flowers and vase. The human towers of Spanish tradition suggested to Mònica Subirana Martinez the juxtapositions of Cewer Castle, an elegant collection of elongated vases permitting to place the flowers at different levels. Lebanese Pamela Amine transformed arabesque motifs in functional elements in her collection Freed Soul; while Turkish Deniz Demirkanli found in the traditional tiles used in Istanbul’s Blue Mosque the idea for his Frame, a vase that reinterprets the symbolic tulips and carnations.

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