There and Back

Crisscrossing the globe in search of innovative designers.

Looking into design’s horizon requires—beyond searching for new products—scoping out new talent who will influence the way we live and work for years to come. Trade fairs like the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF), in New York; the Salone del Mobile, in Milan; and Maison et Objet Fair, in Paris, are good places to discover next year’s Patricia Urquiola, Milan’s star in 2004. Last September, for example, we found Cal Design, Portugal’s answer to Droog Design, showing their new home/office concept furniture at Lisbon’s In’nova trade fair. And Scandinavian Surface, a collaborative of five artists, promoted their colorful work at London’s 100% Design. London-based Ian Stallard—whose clean contemporary ceramics have unexpected ornate touches—presented his work in the United States for the first time at Citizen-Citizen, in Brooklyn, New York, one of the off-site events of last year’s ICFF. We’re not favoring any designer just yet, but the products and prototypes on these pages are some of the freshest and most promising to have crossed our paths recently. And in a special report that accompanies this piece, associate editor Kristi Cameron provides a snapshot of the current design scene in Helsinki.

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