Interni has called on designers of international stature from various backgrounds – Japan, China, Brazil, Russia, Great Britain, Poland – with different types of training and experience, with the aim of forming a mosaic of styles and visions, and to compare, also on a territorial level, the various characteristics and interpretations of design.


L’art de la photographie

Exhibition curated by Collettivo Alidem

Passion is the driving force in everything I do. The idea that led to the birth of Alidem was to make the art of photography accessible to everyone. The problem was the search for the artists: we looked around, and in the end we saw that in our collective we have the resources, the ability, the desire for innovation, even to a greater extent than other proposals. When you put passion, desire, commitment into something, there are no limits; there is not necessarily any need to have already done something in the sector. In Open Borders and those who have organized it, I have found enthusiasm similar to or even equal to mine.” Pompeo Locatelli, founder of Alidem


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Collettivo Alidem has organized the exhibition L’art de la photographie by combining, in a large black frame, a series of photographic works Alidem has selected and reproduced as limited editions. The exhibition has the goal of making the world of photography meet that of design, proposing possible synergies for interior decorating and supporting young or already successful artists.


Along the Lines of Happiness

Project by Laura Ellen Bacon and Sebastian Cox. Produced by Ahec – American Hardwood Export Council

“The original work was conceived to embody the exact moment of realization, those happy, joyful feelings you have when you are creating something. Two aspects of the work emerge: the technical side, for which each part is carefully prepared; and the part in which the materials are handled, with the hands and with steam.” Laura Ellen Bacon, artist

“In a workshop if you make a mistake no one see it. On this occasion we open the structure to the public, people can come and watch what we are doing while we are doing it. The material is very important, as is the design. Although in this case the design is almost secondary to the fact that we are trying to experiment with wood.” Sebastian Cox, designer/maker



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The installation arises as a work in progress, from the encounter between the artist and sculptor Laura Ellen Bacon and the designer Sebastian Cox; it is an experiment to emphasize the qualities of certain types of American hardwood (soft maple, American cherry, red oak). The installation has been produced with AHEC - American Hardwood Export Council, the leading international association of the American hardwood industry.


Be Brazilian

Exhibition curated by José Roberto Moreira do Valle with Brazil S/A

“It is hard to narrate everything about Brazil, the materials, the products; here in Milan we presented a small cutaway of Brazilian design, bringing a bit of its innovation and creativity. We decided to pay tribute to Modernism, presenting the Niemeyer 1985 table by Oscar Niemeyer for Estel and the chair by Lina Bo Bardi. Interni’s idea of gathering design from all over the world in an exhibition adds great impact and interest to Design Week in Milan.”  José Roberto Moreira do Valle, founder of Brazil S/A



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The Conogó divider by Noemi Saga, the Dandi table by Camila Fix (Fix Design), the Cobra Coral chair by Sérgio Matos.
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The Niemeyer 1985 table by Oscar Niemeyer for Estel.
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Be Brazilian was the 7th edition of the exhibition with which Brazil S/A takes part in the FuoriSalone in Milan, and the second in the context of the Interni event. Along the portico San Nazaro the show presented works by about 40 designers and artists, as in a large open-air gallery. Brazil S/A has the aim of promoting the image of Brazilian design, favoring contact between designers and companies. With the collaboration of Angelo Derenze, Fran Abreu and the studio Piuarch.
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The installation “Trolleys. The Neon Traffic Dealer” by Alê Jordão.

Design without Borders. Press Office

Project by Mac Stopa with Nmc, Milliken

“For me Open Borders means opening the borders between different design disciplines: architecture, industrial design, graphic design, fashion. The experience gained in one discipline helps to create objects in others. It doesn’t matter if a project is long-term, what counts are its roots; this press office is an example of a project that is isolated from the context. It means there is freedom of expression, lack of stress, it means you can open your mind to creative thoughts. The ideas developed for Open Borders will be long-term ideas for the future.” Mac Stopa, architect



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L’ufficio stampa, progettato da Mac Stopa con le aziende Nmc (schiume sintetiche) e Milliken (rivestimenti tessili per pavimenti), si articolava in due zone: l’area reception, arredata con un bancone e dei pouf realizzati con i Comfy® Noodles di Nmc (in questa pagina), e l’area riunioni, con sedute e tavoli della nuova Drum Collection di Mac Stopa per Cappellini (nella pagina seguente). Le pareti sono state rivestite con le piastrelle tridimensionali Arstyl® Wings (Nmc), mentre a terra è stato posato il tappeto a tasselli di Milliken. Hanno partecipato anche Marro e Luceplan.

Digital Borders

Project by Felice Limosani with East End Studio

“The present paradox is that geopolitical borders are increasingly tight, while other borders are expanding: conversations online, virtual encounters. From this perspective I have thought that Big Data could be a big opportunity. I have developed a CSM system, a system that scans data, and interfaced it with the data of the UN and the European Community on migratory flows; I imported the data to a graphic engine that in real time transformed them into flows of images project on LED monitors.” Felice Limosani, multidisciplinary creator


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The installation Digital Borders by Felice Limosani on the South Portal featured LED monitors by Panasonic showing graphics to illustrate migratory flows. Produced with East End Studios.


Innovative Perspective: Itinerary

Project by Lissoni Associati with Audi

The installation created by Piero Lissoni for Audi and placed in the Cortile d’Onore of the State University was closely connected to three other installations from the same series positioned at the entrance to Torre Velasca and on Via Monte Napoleone, to interpret the four rings of the automaker’s logo.


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Innovative Perspective: Itinerary was a place of gathering and relaxation, with the aim of providing indications on the position and meaning of the other three installations around the city.



Project by Chen Xiangjing with Jing Yi Zhi International Furniture Supply

“If design means identifying problems and solving them, we might say it is a work with no limits. A good designer should never close himself inside any borders. In my view, Open Borders means keeping your horizons free and open, identifying problems, taking the possibilities generated by the process of creation into account. My work ranges from architecture to interior design, works of art to furnishings for the home. In Milan we have brought two series of seats I have recently designed. The designer should make a bridge between people and new lifestyles, which means not only solving problems, but also showing a new way of living, and creating more possibilities for this.” Chen Xiangjing, designer



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The installation Metaphor in the portico of the Cortile d’Onore featured two displays for two seating collections designed by Chen Xiangjing and produced by Jing Yi Zhi International Furniture Supply, the Chinese furniture manufacturer in which oriental taste meets design, associating tradition and innovation. One of the two collections included seats covered with red lacquer, while the other had armchairs with a metal structure and seats in wood recycled from old river boats.

Moving Lights

Project Studio Castagna Ravelli with Azul Italia

Bands of light directed upward, bowing and rising, intersecting and overlapping, to underline the festival of design organized by Interni in the spaces of Ca’ Granda: ten mobile heads in constant motion, hidden by two boxes at the sides of the gate enhanced by a line of Azul marble. The light is white, to not superimpose itself on the color of the historic building, and to highlight the entrance to Open Borders.



Parabolic Stripes

Project by Noriko Tsuiki e Naoyuki Shirakawa with Kokura Stripes Japan Association

“Our installation took its cue from the curved lines of the cloth in the garment worn by St. Ambrose in the plaster model by Adolfo Wildt. This year is the 150th anniversary of the start of diplomatic relations between Japan and Italy. The 150 rolls of fabric of the structure in front of the statue celebrate this anniversary and the hope for a long future of collaboration between our countries.” Noriko Tsuiki, textile artist

“We were inspired by the architectural features of the historic building of the State University, especially the space in front of St. Ambrose and the Scalone d’Onore, with its enchanting shadows.” Naoyuki Shirakawa, architect



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Parabolic Stripes was composed of three creations in the traditional Japanese vertical striped fabric (Kokura Stripes): a volume with a rectangular section in front of the statue of St. Ambrose; a column with the cylinder divided into four parts; a chandelier positioned in the vault of the staircase. The installation was made by Kokura Stripes Japan Association, which promotes the spread of the traditional striped fabrics, and with the collaboration of the textile company Shima-Shima.

The 55 springtimes of the Salone

Project by Lorenzo Marini Group

In the Cortile d’Onore, an installation that was a tribute to the Salone del Mobile.Milano, which reached its 55th edition in 2016. The three-dimensional composition presented the new image of the Salone, created by Lorenzo Marini, extending between past and future: a blend of the number 55 and the eye, the first symbol used by the Salone in 1961. To mark an important point of arrival for the Milanese fair.


Ron Arad + Tom Vack

Exhibition by Tom Vack with Moroso

“When I think about open borders I think of the people with whom I have worked, always on the borderline between art and design. Ron designs every chair as if he were writing his name, each part in perfect proportion. So I can understand the his borders are his persona.” Tom Vack, photographer

“I am sitting on a chair called Tom Vack. When I had to give a name to this chair, it was originally supposed to be Vacuum Formed. A few years later I met Tom who said: ‘Ron, do you know what you did to me? Every time I go to a party or a bar people ask me: ‘What’s your name?’ And I say: ‘Tom Vack.’ ‘What? You are named after a chair?’ I am very happy when there are no borders, when something is open. These photographs were taken to be printed in a book, but now the borders are open, and the photos are on the walls.” Ron Arad, designer


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The exhibition was the result of the desire of Patrizia Moroso to celebrate a path that began over 20 years ago, when Tom Vack photographed the first products Ron Arad had designed for the company. The exhibition gathered 20 life-size photographs in Portico Richini taken by Vack and showing products by Arad for Moroso, some of which were placed next to the images. The show, produced by Moroso, was installed by the architect Ester Pirotta.


Scorched or Blackened

Project by Paolo Belardi and Aba – Accademia Belle Arti di Perugia. Supported by Regione Umbria

“The installation was conceived as a ‘house in the house,’ i.e. a form of viral incorporation; a long glass curtain that protects the true materials of the installation, that are not the installation but its content. Four experiments on four traditional materials of the Umbria Region, conducted by four designer-artists of the Accademia di Belle Arti in Perugia: ceramics for Arthur Duff, wood for Marco Fagioli, paper for Pietro Carlo Pellegrini, glass for Paul Robb. For two years now the Fine Arts Academy of Perugia has launched, by order of the Umbria Region, a new path of ideological construction that is somehow a viaticum for the future, for a new Umbria that knows how to look beyond. I believe that today, more than ever, borders should not be opened, but erased; our installation has somehow pushed Open Borders towards No Borders.” Paolo Belardi, engineer and director of Aba


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Scorched or Blackened, the pavilion supported by the Umbria Region and created by Paolo Belardi with the “Accademia di Belle Arti Pietro Vannucci di Perugia” was located in the portico of the Cortile d’Onore. The pavilion, displaying four experiments with the materials of Umbrian crafts (ceramic, wood, paper, glass), had an outer wall decorated with a pattern of characters using Monk, the new font launched by the Umbria Region for Expo Milano 2015.


The Great JJ

Produced by Leucos

“We decided to create mini-installations composed of three Great JJ lamps, enormous ones, over four meters high, intertwining and featuring new colors. The Great JJ is a lamp that was invented as a desk light, with an adjustable arm with springs; the contrast between the habit of seeing it in a small tabletop size and the image of the tall version conveys the sensation of being in another dimension. A project like this temporary installation, connected with a single event, is important because it lets you create things bordering on the impossible.” Riccardo Candotti, President of Leucos



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In the entrance portico of the Cortile d’Onore, groups of Great JJ floor lamps produced by Leucos in innovative colors, specifically for Open Borders. Other groups of three shades of the Great JJ model replaced the suspension lamps of the portico.


X1: the Story of a Family Passion

An exhibition curated by CARLO BACH with illy

“The exhibition investigates the borders of perception: it is based on the idea of anamorphosis, of managing to read something only from a particular vantage point. The basic idea was to take the colonnade and clone it; in this fake colonnade, through a game of anamorphosis, it is possible to read words that trigger relations between the past and present of coffee machines. The Salone del Mobile is the true moment of experimentation in Italy, on design and on materials. Interni makes it possible to go beyond the normal approach to an installation. We have also worked on the idea of having a moment for coffee in a place that is an installation, that can be used as a gathering place.” Carlo Bach, Artistic Director Illycaffè


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The West Loggia contained the exhibition ‘X1: the Story of a Family Passion’ created by Carlo Bach for illy; amidst red and black columns, the coffee machines that have made the history of illy: illetta, the forerunner, created 80 years ago; the X1, now twenty years old; and finally the X1 Anniversary Edition, the new model that combines features of the two ‘historic’ machines.

Orto Botanico di Brera

Via F.lli Gabba, 10 / Via Brera, 28

MyEquilibria, The Wellness Park, is a project to encourage urban fitness, where design and high technology combine to create an innovative outdoor gym.


MyEquilibria, The Wellness Park

Project by Vito Di Bari with Metalco Active

“At the Orto Botanico a new tree species was born: MyEquilibria. It is a tree made for people, and this is why the name starts with ‘My.’ This choice comes from the fact that, as Frank Chimero, multidisciplinary designer, says, ‘people ignore design that ignores people’; a concept that expresses the very soul of design. The relationship with the theme Open Borders is hidden inside the tree, and it also represents my personal idea of design: to hide technology of the next generation inside a sophisticated object. The material utilized to construct the tree is a high-performance cement combined with carbon fiber and fiberglass: it has the velvety tactile characteristics of a human-scale material, the elegance of cement, but also the flexibility of metal. And this makes the tree unique. Our ambition is to inspire not just reflection, but a mode of wellbeing, a better quality of life.” Vito Di Bari, designer


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MyEquilibria, by Vito Di Bari for Metalco Active, is an innovative outdoor gym: the central tree, 7 meters high, in high-performance cement, can have up to 9 satellite islands, where up to 30 persons can exercise. An app suggests the best exercises and permits socializing with other users. On the facing page, below, the Natural Puzzle bench by Metalco Active, in reconstructed granite and marble, designed by Pio & Tito Toso.