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| Designbest editorial staff

"C

heerfully Optimistic About the future" (on show in Milan until January 6, 2022)is the name of the first Italian solo exhibition of Michael Anastassiades, the Cypriot designer born in 1967 who was just awarded with the Compasso d’Oro.

Inaugurated in conjunction with September’s Design Week at the Fondazione ICA Milano (the Institute of Contemporary Arts) and curated by the ICA’s director Alberto Salvadori, the exhibition puts a personal collection of stones and a new series of self-produced lamps on display.

The focus is on nature from a top designer’s perspective: and the collection of rocks and pebbles, which have been collected from around the world since Anastassiades was a child, is intended as an example of how nature can create perfect forms. Light takes care of the rest of the exhibition’s tale. It’s not by chance that the absolute highlights of the project are the 27 sculptural lamps which were handmade by the designer during the 2020 lockdown, assembling bamboo canes, linen threads and lighting units through subtraction.

Graceful, creative and refined, Anastassiades recalls one of the great masters like Gio Ponti, Gino Sarfatti and Charlotte Perriand and recounts his tale in an orderly fashion, harking back to primitive Mediterranean artifacts and archaic rites which awaken atavistic emotions.

He is cheerfully optimistic about the future (as the name of the show highlights) and projects us into a virtual forest, where nature is predominant and technology, reduced to a minimum, remains in the hands of humanity and the environment. And he proposes a thoughtful and cautious vision of a future made up of balance and harmony.

Where: Fondazione ICA via Orobia 22, Milan, Italy
When: until January 6, 2022

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