31/01/2013 - “I’m a man of simple tastes. I’m always satis?ed with the best”. B&B Italia has taken Oscar Wilde’s aphorism for the first 2013 international exhibition, IMM Cologne from 14th to 20th January. Despite the current situation, the company is not looking for convenient shortcuts, preferring to rely on its strategy of exploring the potentiality of its products, increasing the range of sizes and enhancing their functionality
B&B Italia believes that enriching its heritage means having confidence in its work, because experience has shown that one season isn’t enough to develop the full potential of a project. So ten years after its debut, the Andy sofa by Paolo Piva, which became a classic in the new millennium, appears in new sizes - without affecting its ability to transform from a sofa into a chaise-longue. It now offers four depths, depending on the tilt of the back and the extension of the seats. From an aesthetic point of view it has a softer look and a modified base in glossy or black chrome-plated tubular steel.
The sofa is completed by a new terminal element that adds flexibility to the configuration. It is important to emphasise that its versatile shape (extension + flat seat) allows Andy ’13 to transform into an extremely comfortable bed with a depth of 93 cm, made possible simply by raising the back. Shifting the seat, too, extends the depth to 114 cm. Additional comfort is provided by new cushions with a back roller that acts as headrest or loinrest. Diesis by Antonio Citterio and Paolo Nava has never been surpassed and remains a contemporary design product. It retains its iconic status even with the latest black chromed finish, in addition to bright brushed die-cast aluminium.
Tobi-Ishi by Edward Barber & Jay Osgerby has attracted intense critical and media interest and the interesting use of materials has already allowed it to develop a distinct identity. Launched last April with a cement grout finish and presented in September in London and in October in NY in two contrasting types of marble, white Carrara and black Marquinia, Tobi-Ishi is now introduced to an international audience in Cologne.
Achieving iconic status with its organic, sculptural design, the Grande Papilio by Naoto Fukasawa armchair now appears with an entirely new look. The natural abaca interlacing for the swivel seat and the ottoman helps accentuate the details, even the less obvious ones, and emphasises the balance of forms created by the sinuous curves of the back and slightly conical shape of the frame.
Finally, Husk by Patricia Urquiola and Flat.C wall system by Antonio Citterio take yet another step forward. Husk offers a new version, a combination of chair and small armchair on a die-cast frame, with or without swivel seat and with shells in a wide range of colours, also available in thick leather. The Flat.C wall system has always offered exciting new solutions, and now features veined titanium microscale finish.
As fluid and harmonious as ever, identical to the indoor version, but with a lighter appearance thanks to the materials, the armchairs Papilio by Naoto Fukasawa now join the Outdoor Collection. Grande Papilio, Piccola Papilio and Mini Papilio, in all three sizes, display their distinctive single material appeal with an anthracite colour polyethylene interlacing that adapts perfectly to their curves. The ottoman, of course, echoes Grande Papilio with polyethylene interlacing. Canasta ’13 by Patricia Urquiola is given a tortora melange makeover with the new polyethylene fibre, creating an interlacing that evokes the designer’s Crinoline collection. The sofas, armchairs and small armchairs all feature new fabrics and are accompanied by small tables that harmonise with the new colours. The Awa table by Naoto Fukasawa and Link dining table by Jakob Wagner are given outdoor functionality by a new type of Cristalplant ®.
Different atmosphere and finishes for the setting area dedicated to the Maxalto Collection, coordinated by Antonio Citterio. The spotlight is on the Lux Collection which, after its success at the Milan Design Week 2012, reveals austere forms, fine details and the glamour of reflective surfaces, for a contemporary perspective on the elegance of the ’40s. The collection includes consoles (with or without drawers), storage units (in a range of heights) and tables (in two sizes), which combine their bronze, reflective exteriors with smoked oak interiors. The supports, a hallmark of the range, are in die-cast aluminium with sand-blasted, bronze painted surfaces. This matching series of designs perfectly fit with either contemporary or classic items.
The 2013 fabrics collection brings something genuinely new to the table and its range of proposals brings new meaning to the concept of “covers”, even on well-established products. Bright melange velvets, natural fibre fabrics, jacquard weaves and shimmer effects create unusual mix and sartorial combinations. The covers - for loose cushions that do not belong to the seat structure but enhance it and add comfort - help inspire a more decorative interpretation. The colours satisfy different tastes - the neutral beiges, greys and browns are still present, but there is now an attention-grabbing range of contemporary tones, with vivid and restrained shades of purple, blue and greens.