Salone del Mobile 2016

As the international design crowd descended upon Milan for the greatest show on Earth – Salone del Mobile, which ran 12–17 April – we undertook our yearly hunt for the finest features of all. From the brimming Rho fairgrounds to unmissable exhibitions, presentations, product launches and installations, we scoured every urban inch to bring you the highlights from the world's most significant furniture fair.

Read on for Wallpaper's superlative picks, as they happened…

Salone del Mobile 2016: in pictures

  • American company Emeco enlisted Sam Hecht and Kim Colin of Industrial Facility to create something a little different from the norm. Not wanting to 'do another chair', the London-based studio set off to 'make something to put the chairs around: a table'. Inspired by the collective, congenial atmosphere around public furniture – canteen tables, park benches, library shelves and the like – the 'RUN' collection was born: a table and bench, a shelf and some accessories, too. Photography courtesy of Industrial Facility

  • 'Atelier Swarovski Home is an exciting new brand that will offer the ultimate in luxury crystal home décor with an ultra-modern design aesthetic,' explains Nadja Swarovski. 'This is a natural evolution for Atelier Swarovski and a great opportunity to showcase the art of crystal cutting in a range of designs and forms.' Among the debut designs for the new label were the characteristically sinuous shapes of the late Zaha Hadid, pictured. Photography: Mark Cocksedge

  • Knoll's show stopping stand at the Fiera was designed by OMA and decadently mixed materials for the backdrop of the new 18K gold versions of the 'Planter' collection

  • Design Academy Eindhoven graduate Hozan Kangana presented his unique work at Ventura Lambrate. His poetic sculptures are imbued with historical references and take cues from his his life experiences of growing up in Iraq, and then taking refuge in Netherlands

  • At EuroCucina, Dutch designer Lex Pott has experimented with oxidisation for his model for luxury French oven manufacturers La Cornue, taking their brass wares to a new level described as a cross between alchemy and art

  • At Baars & Bloemhoff's experimental exhibition 'Transitions' in Lambrate, Dutch designer Lex Pott played with colour across his geometric 'Chroma' collection that used a mix of Abet Laminati and metal laminates from Homapal

  • Alternatively, De Intuïtiefabriek explored designs using coloured MDF. Inspired by architectural buildings, they formed graphic carved pieces and titled them 'Spatial'

  • 'Maybe we were very avant-garde ten years ago,' jests Jaime Hayon as comments are made about the distinctly contemporary feel of the Showtime 10 collection for BD Barcelona which is, in fact, celebrating its 10th anniversary this season. 'We found that the designs still worked, still popular, so rather than creating something "new" and unnecessary, we are just fine-tuning the current offering; new colours, finishes and so on.' All whilst keeping true to Hayon's playful style, of course...

  • Lighting brand Foscarini has a knack for the fantastic and bright. This season they enlisted designer/architect Ferruccio Laviani to play with scale in an Alice in Wonderland-like installation of Foscarini lamps and their giant versions

  • 'We want to keep the plurality of Driade,' explains David Chipperfield, the famous British architect and Driade's art director since 2015. Speaking from within the Pompeii-inspired stand at the Fiera, Chipperfield contemplates the future of the Italian furniture brand and the need to tread carefully, though decisively: 'the landscape of companies in the furniture business is complex and Driade has a very particular history and we shouldn't lose that', he says.

    Placing his trust in few individuals – namely Konstantin Grcic, Naoto Fukasawa, Philippe Starck and Fredrikson Stallard – the new collection strikes a balance between design success and commercial credibility. Pictured left: Fredrikson Stallard's 'Camouflage' chair. Pictured right: Konstantin Grcic's 'Mingx' chair

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Salone del Mobile 2016: news and features

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