Lake Como Design Fair pushes the boundaries between fair and exhibition by bringing together design and architecture lovers through a unique event. After its successful debut, the fair will return for its second edition on September 20-22, 2019, now embracing two venues. A curated design selection will be presented at the Teatro Sociale Como and a new section – entirely dedicated to architecture – will be held at the Palazzo del Broletto. This year the focus is on colour. Designers and architects are invited to contribute to a reflection and investigation on the subject of colour with and through their submitted projects.

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Teatro Sociale Como

On the one hand
design

The ambition of the design section is to immerge the Ridotto rooms of Teatro Sociale Como in all the chromatic gradations of the most contemporary design projects. The fair will showcase around 150 works that highlight new complementarities, fresh insights and independent creative processes. By focusing on colour, the fair will engage visitors in a kind of permanent firework display and enable them to share the positivity and optimism of the selected projects. The fair will not only present the evocative power of colour and its incursions into the design world, but will also reflect the freedom of taste and aesthetics that are typical of our present times.

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Palazzo del Broletto

On the other hand
architecture

The fair aims to reach out to those architects who do not solely focus on their clients' briefs, but also and consistently give free rein to their ideas through the production of artefacts that reflect their particular practice. Unlike in the design section of the fair, the architects are not expected to provide design objects, but also items that have been created before, during or after the creative process accompanying their projects, whether actually built or not, or simply utopian. Besides sketches, photographs or models, we invite architects to also consider “accidental masterpieces,” where serendipity (or not) may have generated these collaterally to their designs: mock-ups, resin fragments, foam sculptures, abstract totems,… Further, we also look forward receiving submissions by architecture photographers or proposals of such work by the authors of the portrayed objects. The depiction of architecture and its materiality is as much a colour-giver as the process of its creation.

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Open call

“One sits more comfortably on a colour that one likes”, Verner Panton

We are openly inviting designers, architects, photographers, galleries, brands and editors to submit their proposals. The selected works, that will link the most diverse influences, will be chosen for their quality and colour attitude.

Como and its lake, on the threshold of Italy and Switzerland, and its very own rich architectural legacy, is the natural choice to welcome a new fair dedicated to design and architecture.

The curators

Margherita Ratti, founder and fair curator, will set up the new architecture section with Andreas Kofler, architect-urbanist, editor and curator.

Margherita Ratti is a design advisor and curator and expert in communication and development strategies, with a reputation for always looking forward rather than back. Margherita (born and raised in Como) currently lives and works in Paris. Having studied architecture at the Politecnico di Milano and contemporary art at the Sorbonne, Margherita divides her time between design and architecture, initiating, developing and promoting new and future projects. Previously artistic director of the Galerie Italienne, specialised in the production of limited design editions, she also conceived LAN Architecture’s communication strategy and developed their cross-media projects. She has co-curated at MoMO Galerie with the artist and photographer Romaric Tisserand and since 2012 has collaborated with the engineering firm Bollinger+Grohmann in Paris. Margherita is the founder of It’s Great Design.

Andreas Kofler is an architect, urbanist, freelance writer and curator. Originally from Merano (South Tyrol, Italy), he studied architecture in Madrid and Vienna, where he graduated from the Technical University in 2005. Since then, he has worked for several offices and architects – amongst them Theo Deutinger (TD), Rem Koolhaas (OMA/AMO), l’AUC and Dominique Perrault (DPA) – before co-founding in Paris, together with Marcello Tavone, the office Weltgebraus. Most of his projects imply a multidisciplinary declension, such as the work on Greater Paris (DPA), Greater Moscow (l’AUC), Prada (AMO), and the exhibition ‘The Image of Europe’ (TD/AMO) for the European Union. His curatorial projects include ‘Japanese architectures in Paris, 1867–2017’ and the first exhibition about Armando Ronca, both accompanied by homonymous publications. He is a regular writer for magazine L’Architecture d’Aujourd’hui, is an associate professor at the E.N.S.A.Versailles and the curator of the Swiss Architecture Museum (S AM) in Basel.

Lake Como Design Fair is part of a cultural initiative by Wonderlake Como Association, aiming to support and promote awareness of the beauty and heritage of Lake Como, while seeking to encourage people to discover the historical sites of the region.

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First edition

Lake Como Design fair was first launched in 2018 and welcomed 100 objects and 22 graphic artworks from 52 European exhibitors. 80% of the exhibited works have been created in the last three years and 15% have been specially conceived for the fair.

Works by

Achille Perilli / Alberto Meda / Alessandro Ciffo / Alexandre Zhu / Analogia Project / Andrea Branzi / Anne Breton / Antonino Sciortino / Astrid Luglio / Atelier Maximum / Calori&Maillard / Cara Davide / Celia-Hannes / Christoph Steiger / Cillevengberg / CTRLZAK / David Dubois / Dean Brown / Donald Judd / Dossofiorito / Draga&Aurel / Duccio Maria Gambi / DWA Design Studio / Earnest Studio / Elvire Bonduelle / Ginevra Taccola / Giorgia Zanellato / Giuseppe Arezzi / Gruppo Sturm / Guy Marshall-Brown / Handmade Industrials / Hannes Stephensen / Johannes Nagel / Jonas Lutz / Kazuhide Takahama&Allen Jones / Konstantin Grcic / Labaye Agathe&Florian Sumi / Lawrence Weiner / Leonard Kadid / Liliana Ovalle / Marco Mumenthaler / Marion Duclos Mailaender / Matthias Kaiser / Mattia Bonetti / Michele De Lucchi / Mimmo Totaro / Morten Espersen / Nathan Yong / Nendo / Nicolas Verschaeve / Paolo Gonzato / Pascal Vangysel / Perfect Documents / Pierre Charpin / Pierre Gonalons / Pietro Russo / Sandra Davolio / Signe Emdal / Stories of Italy / Studio B Severin / Studio La Cube / Thelonious Goupil / Thomas Ballouhey

press clippings

“There are real gems to be seen, from one hall to the next, each using its own innovative and thoroughly contemporary language, and which we hope will become benchmarks of excellence for this historic period of the project”

ELLE DECOR

“Contemporary design is moving into the enchanting setting of Teatro Sociale Como with a new initiative aimed at international audience.”

DOMUS

“Curatorial care and attention to the mise en scène of the works displayed, rather than their particular usefulness, are the principal characteristics of the Lake Como Design Fair.”

ARTRIBUNE

“Showcased in the special setting created in the Ridotto frescoed rooms of Teatro Sociale Como, are the contemporary and new projects of of designers, galleries, and Italian and international publishers.”

LIVING

“Free from the constraints of divisions by stands, the fair seems much more like an exhibition, where all that is on show is for sale.”

ICON DESIGN

“The vessel has imposed a format that shows off to best advantage the 100 pieces on exhibition from all over Europe. It offers the chance to try out a new formula for communication and sales, arranging new and emerging production and lays the groundwork for future design collections.”

PANORAMA