REFLEXION OF THE WEEK: The fragility of design
Graniti Fiandre interprets ceramics from the point of view of environmental sustainability and the associated aesthetic, in a single material combining the resistance of ceramics with the look of wood, very popular today as a natural, renewable, recyclable material. Natura Maximum porcelain stoneware tiles measuring 240x24 also open up new possibilities in the very concept of covering, elevating ceramics from their traditional role as decorative modules to the status of architectural surface.

Designing means imagining what things could be before they even exist, proceeding beyond rituals and, as Gillo Dorfles says in his introduction to “Il feticcio quotidiano” (The daily fetish), freeing oneself of the compulsive gestures identified with these years to reclaim our relationship with objects.

Conscious choice of an object, after considering its meaning, how it works and its use, setting aside fashions and conformism, puts the object back into the foreground, where people act consciously in complete autonomy. This is the theme of the exhibition “Untouchables”, at Fuorisalone in Milan, where the Dutch Invertuals group designer exhibition showed objects which are “vulnerable” in terms of use, productive process or form, reclaiming the right to be used consciously: Mieke Meijer designed a lamp which lights up by sliding the element containing the led light source over the base to find the right balance every time, in search of which we are forced to actually pay attention to the lamp and to our own carefully meditated act, naturally generating a feeling of affection towards the object.

If this does not happen, and compulsive disaffection dominates, the tragic effect is filling up our planet with waste materials, as was the case at the Museum für Gestaltung in Zurich, where during the "Out to Sea?" exhibition the hall was submerged by a quantity of plastic refuse equal to that poured into the ocean every 15 seconds. A cry of pain like that of Doris Salcedo’s objects for everyday use, furnishings which are suffocated in cement or tables stacked one on top of the other, where in the end what wins is nature, sprouting up between the wooden boards.

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