Design Miami/ 2014

Massimo Uberti’s Light is the first in a series of Bentley Elements installations. Photos courtesy of Bentley Elements

If optical illusion, decomposed form and new American pop marked this year’s Art Basel Miami Beach, revived modernism, geometry and rich materials set the tone at Design Miami/. Bringing 35 of the world’s top limited edition galleries to the multicultural city, the fair attracted its usually set of collectors but also a slew of new enthusiasts. Among the onset of vintage-cum-contemporary furniture, the following installations stood out.

Exploring Bentley’s production process, Italian artist Massimo Uberti chose to express the final step, in which technicians employ ultra-violet light to inspect and correct imperfections, by sculpting neon tubes into an industrial-inspired house, table and chair. Curated by London-based duo Campbell-Rey, Light is the first in a series of projects the luxury car brand had commissioned.

While Zaha Hadid and Peter Marino retrospectives flanked Marina Ambrovic and Daniel Libeskind’s rice counting bench, Fendi presented Roman Lounge – a neutral, but rich, interior designed by Dimore Studio to represent a modern apartment in Rome. Sloped, semi-transparent colour planes filled an open-structure bookcase with light tubes interlocking above.

As part of the fair’s new Design Curio programme, young curators were invited to envision total environments. Though some sought out to pinpoint the current Memphis Style revival with a room entirely dedicated to Ettore Sottsass others, like Coral Morphologies, introduced new concepts. With the Uncertain Surface series, interdisciplinary practice Ro/Lu defied industry taboos and employed a grid to shape chairs, stools, cabinets, garment, carpets and even wallpaper.

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