nichetto-nendo-collection (1)image courtesy Alexander Lagergren

nichetto-nendo-collection (1-1)In the 1980s there was Ettore Sottsass and Shiro Kuramata. In the 2000s there was Jasper Morrison and Naoto Fukasawa. Now, the latest tie-up between Italian and Japanese designers is Luca Nichetto and Oki Sato from Nendo, representing a new generation of heavy-weight collaborations.

Nichetto always had an appreciation for Japan. “For a European guy to discover that amazing culture, and the precision with which things are done, is fantastic,” he told Dwell Magazine. And when he met Sato for coffee in Stockholm, the two hit it off and immediately decided to create a collaborative collection that they would display in Milan.

But with only 4 months until the fair, they didn’t have time on their side. “Oki told me that in Japan in the past, there was this poetry called renga,” Nichetto recalled, “where one poet would send the first three sentences to another poet. And the second one replied with the last two sentences.” And there you had it. Oki would send Nichetto some sketches and Nichetto would work on them and send them back. In just several days the two came up with seven co-conceived products that included glass shelves, a candle holder, paper lamps and a modular carpet.

nichetto-nendo-collection (2)photos by Hiroshi Iwasaki

nichetto-nendo-collection (6)Sheets of glass with a satin-finished front and coated back give the shelves the transparency and softness of a speech bubble floating in mid-air.

nichetto-nendo-collection (3-1)A sofa like an archipelago, divided into small parts rather than one great mass.

nichetto-nendo-collection (4)A carpet whose form, colour and size can change flexibly thanks to its parts: small overlapping pieces like fish scales or roof tiles.

nichetto-nendo-collection (5)Washi paper lamps that resemble ice cream. When lit, the lamp’s soft light makes the paper fibers stand out, and each color brings a subtly different character.

nichetto-nendo-collection (7)A trellis room divider made from highly stretchable fabric attached diagonally to the frame.

nichetto-nendo-collection (8)nichetto-nendo-collection (9)
Left: the wedge candle holder can accommodate all shapes and sizes. | Right: A stool that’s easy to pick up and carry about, thanks to its round form and

‘handle’ like a pot handle.

This post is part of our review of the 2013 Milano Salone del Mobile. All posts are cataloged right here.