Designing in colour means filling the spaces. If what Yves Klein said is true, and colours are the real inhabitants of space, designers and artists are the artificers of the relationships between humans, objects and the environment. Against rampant conformity are ranged custom products; these unique pieces between art and design signal the way. But, colour also contributes to making the environments in which we live more personal, expressions of the unique beings that inhabit them.

For the coming year, the Pantone Color Institute highlights the desire for colours that transcend the seasons, satisfying the need of fashion and industrial designers to express their originality and creativity through self-expressive colours. Surprising hues like Valiant Poppy, Russet Orange, Ultra Violet, Limelight, Quetzal Green and Pink Peacock, encourage unexpected and unconventional choices by experimenting with combinations and materials that reinvent the history of colours – as well as the relationship between ourselves and the world around us. For example, with Color Flow and Color Words, the Korean studio Orijeen uses colour to remind us of the relationship that we have with objects and cultural references.

Colorflow, design by Orijeen

In full colour, at Milan Design Week 2018, ‘Be Brasil’, is an unprecedented journey that brought visitors directly across the ocean to experience the unique mix recreated by the soul of Brazilian design. At Edit standouts were the blue and red of Carol Gay’s Cinto Chair, made of seatbelts and stainless steel, which is meant to invoke the subversion of the ordinary use of these materials.

Cinto Chair, design Carol Gay


Dutch designer Sander Wassink, exhibiting at Rossana Orlandi, initiated a dialogue between the indigenous Moroccan aesthetic and global industrialism in his reconstruction of the Diagonal chair designed by W.H. Gispen in1927. With the arrogance of colour Wassink brings new forms and new visions of beauty to light out of what already existed.

Diagonal, design Sander Wassink

Analogia Project, two young designers – Roman by birth but Milanese by choice – selects Bordeaux for the Viae valet stand for Frag, while Chiara Andreatti combines wood with intensely blue glass in Sen for Potocco.

Viae (Frag), design Analogia ProjectSen (Potocco), design Chiara Andreatti

Colour is also a presence in the Galactica furnishings of Antonio Aricò, in Utu’s lamps and Nodus rugs – as in the amusing Flatter designed by Maarten Baas, that ironically tells the tale of having designed the furnishings of a room that, once finished, were all flattened by a giant steamroller.

Galactica, design Antonio Aricò

Flatter rug (Nodus), design Maarten Baas

Young German designer Lukas Lüttgen of Folkwang University of the Arts, inspired by asteroids, also creates a ‘bubblegum’ pink cushion for his Moonscape stool. Because, ultimately colour is imagination, a game, fun.

Moonscape stool, design Lukas Lüttgen