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Published by Sugar & Cream, Tuesday 06 June 2023

Images and Text Courtesy of Arclinea

Drawing Better Connections

The 2023 edition of Milan Design Week brings to light Arclinea‘s approach to Ethical Design through a curated series of initiatives and a newly renovated space by Antonio Citterio in the company’s flagship store of via Durini 7. The project is a tribute and call to Drawing Better Connections with food, family and nature, as a way to evolve in a more symbiotic and responsible way. A concept which sits at the core of the company purpose since Arclinea itself rose out of the connection between a ‘trattoria’, epitome of Italian food legacy, and a traditional wood-shop, the essence of the company’s project culture.

“We see the kitchen as the space where all of the ingredients that are quintessential to life – food, family, nature – can be connected into ever-evolving recipes” says Gianni Fortuna, CEO of Arclinea. “It’s the epicenter of the ritual of existence, which will only be preserved and regenerated if we design spaces that amplify such connections”.

Arclinea’s Ethical Design promise arises from an awareness of the complexity of these connections, and their profound mutual influence. Recognizing that, in order to preserve and regenerate life, it is vitally important to re-connect with the food we eat, the communities we build and the environment we inhabit.

The reflection on the path of sustainable evolution undertaken by the brand is expressed through a series of unique events and innovative product features that will be presented at Milan Design Week 2023.

Presented by Som Santoso

The first key connection point is food, as establishing a more conscious bond with what we eat is essential to sustain life on Earth. With a commitment to preserve the diverse food heritage of the world Arclinea, in collaboration with Giovanni Marabese of Milano Food Project, curated five private dinners staged as a ‘Relay of Precious Ingredients’ among chefs Luca Marchini, Stefania Bergonzi from Fieno, Norbert Niederkofler, Mimosa Misasi and Gisli Matt.

Luca Marchini, Norbert Niederkofler, Gisli Matt, Stefania Bergonzi, Mimosa Misasi

For their menus, the chefs were asked to use endangered ingredients in combination with products from their local region and other participants’ areas. Each dinner is connected to the following one: each chef will deliver two ingredients from his region to the next, kicking off a relay where these precious elements, at risk of extinction, are the baton. A project that regenerates culinary traditions from around the world into unexpected experiences and recipes, with the aim of raising awareness about the importance of understanding the foods we eat, preserving the legacy they bring and discovering the value of craftsmanship in food production.

The bond with family and nature is instead manifested in the two new installations at display in a dedicated area of the via Durini flagship designed and coordinated by Antonio Citterio. First, each project is a celebration of the family of Italian production partners which make Arclinea’s products possible everyday – the workers and craftsmen who hold the expertise to preserve the company’s legacy and regenerate it through time. An ever evolving network which is valued, traced and transparently communicated as part of Arclinea’s promise to balance its own needs with those of the communities it involves.

Second, these projects exemplify Arclinea’s strive to minimize its impact on the environment through the creation of high-quality, durable products and the sourcing of less harmful raw materials. The key player of this edition is g_cover by Alisea Recycled and Reused Objects Design, an innovative new finishing for the wood panels of the kitchens that represents a new layer of design excellence in Arclinea’s portfolio of ingredients. It yields a unique tone of grey made from upgraded-recycled graphite powder, a byproduct of electrode production. This coating not only enables the company to contribute to the recycling of a precious mineral – otherwise dispersed in landfills – but it also enhances the durability of the kitchens, as g_cover protects wood from light and signs of time. Graphite, moreover, is a non-toxic mineral and it is repurposed and recycled in Italy along traceable supply chains that generate social and environmental value for every actor involved.

g_cover materializes the company’s first step in the new journey designed to maximize impact on people and minimize impact on the environment through better connections with food, family and nature.

Finally, to complete and amplify the brand’s approach, a new Convivium kitchen catalog will also be presented: the symbol of conviviality and connections in Arclinea’s proposal. Inside the catalog, there is a reflection by Antonio Citterio on the evolution of the project and a reminder of the connection between designer and company. Additionally, a final technical section delves into some of the Collection’s themes and explores the novel design solutions of Era System’s tables and New Pocket System’s elements.

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