Milan's newest furniture brand launches their utility-driven first collection

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With strong roots in the Milanese tradition of furniture-making, the new design firm Colé will debut at the coming 2011 Design Week, bringing with it a modern take on usefulness in design. The thinking behind the brand draws on the industry experience of Matteo De Ponti (brand manager of furniture manufacturer Driade for more than ten years) and co-counder Laura Macagno’s passion for art, fashion and design. “We love objects with deep roots and we are convinced that in a world almost full of objects, the product should be first of all a service”, the entrepreneurs explained.

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Their combined ambition seeks to define not just new concepts, but new ways of making design, based on expressive research and an unseen collaboration among all taking part in the productive chain.

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By defining new kinds of partnerships with local producers, the goal is to come up with objects that testify as much to the work of designers as to the artisanal techniques, in Italy and abroad. This approach aims to have nearly unique products, defined by Colé’s concepts but always slightly different due to semi-mechanized processes.

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Two young Milanese studios, Lorenz-Kaz and Aksu/Suardi, designed the first collection in what will become a constant group work made by groups of people and led by rather unusual thinking. “We provided them with an emotional brief – says De Ponti – rather than a technical one: the keywords were color, nature, warmth and soul.” The resulting chairs, tables and mirrors recall traditional bourgeoisie furniture, but the layer of a certain degree of irony, and mixture of signs, materials, colors and cultures suggests a project in tune with the times.