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Binfaré’s Pack scoops Salone del Mobile.Milano prize

EdraPackEdra’s Pack sofa – in which a upholstered polar bear forms a back rest on a pack of ice – has been crowned the best furnishing product a the second Salone del Mobile.Milano Awards.

‘The sofa, Pack, sees the polar bear on a portion of icepack that breaks. There is ice melting, innocence, happiness. There is also the recklessness of the bear who, unaware, enjoys the sunrays in the present moment. It is a very comfortable object that also represents the freedom that we have, not always aware of its precariousness. This sofa in the house dissolves all those binding behaviors that our old western sofas have stiffened. It is a concrete object, a domestic landscape, an exciting landscape inside the house,’ said its designer Francesco Binfaré.
Binfaré first designed for Edra, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary, in 1992.
‘Today we not always know where we are going, and a raft in this fragmentation can be a safe place to stay, to save ourselves and also to enjoy the positive beauty of life, the sun at the time of ice-melting.
‘Some time ago I said that my work is like that of a songwriter. The song contains some interesting meanings, sometimes also thoughtful. Then it frees these thoughts that capture the urgency and necessity of the moment, and makes them accessible pleasant positive.
‘I was saying, the profession: the profession and the craftsmanship in the case of decor products requires, to those who imagine them, to those who draw them, to find the means and the empathic connection with all the people who collaborate, because creating is a beautiful communal story.
‘Here how it is: with Edra, I still find this space. Beautiful was to create the bear! In my heart, while it was taking shape, I hoped that the gesture of the embrace and the contact with the bear could help to rediscover a dimension that we have gradually broken into many small pieces in our past years, which we have called with many technical words but that we find with increasing difficulties, and I think about the word love, which is also affection, understanding and attention, which is also looking into each other’s eyes without filters, without tools, without vanity.’
The awards are designed to recognise the best of April’s Salone.
Other winners were:
Best Product Euroluce: Filo / Andrea Anastasio / Foscarini: ‘For his ability to reread tradition in a contemporary and international vein, bringing new structural meaning to the notion of decoration and personalising mass production.’
Best Product Workplace3.0: Io.T / studio Gtp and Tecno: ‘For its skill in combining innovative technological features and functionality with the human relational demands of the contemporary office environment.’
Best Product xLux: D.Vision3 / Ferruccio Laviani / F.lli Boffi: ‘For the ability to carry forward traditional classic design codes into contemporary culture. A sign of a new eclecticism that underscores the powers of craftsmanship.’
Best Product Classic: Black & White Collection / Provasi: ‘For its skill in combining contemporary materials, processes and decorations (the coverings in nubuck leather and fabric, the faintly Orientalist silver studs) and shapes drawn from the great models of the past, thus informing an original and in its own way innovative style, while maintaining continuity with traditional classical elegance.’
Best Display: Flos / Calvi Brambilla: ‘A display that goes beyond the traditional concept of a trade fair stand thanks to its ability to draw visitors through the light sources as if in a narration. From the exterior to the interior, where lights, colours, materials and solids and voids play out masterfully.’
Best Emerging Designer: Elena Salmistraro: ‘For her ability to enable her own expressive powers of imagination to dialogue with mass production, fuelling new food for thought.’
Best Designer: Philippe Starck: ‘For the consistency with which, over the years, he has created objects that speak an international language. A contemporary master who never fails to surprise.’
Lifetime Achievement Award: Ernesto Gismondi, Artimede co-founder: ‘For his sense of contemporaneity, his innate talent at working up boundless formal solutions that meld lightness with evocations of a near future.’
Special Jury Prize: Marva Griffin, Marva Griffin, Salone Satellite founder: ‘For her generosity and far-sightedness in believing in a project for and with young people: a massively deserved tribute to a woman to whom we are all grateful and indebted.’
Special Banca Intesa Sanpaolo Prize: De Castelli: ‘For “Tracing Identity”, an inclusive project that makes the very most of the company’s manufacturing capabilities, channelling the work of designers left to interpret the raw material according to their own personal vision.’