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The Best of the 2016 Milan Furniture Fair, Part II

The 2016 Salone del Mobile and Fuorisalone — aka the Milan furniture fair — closes today, and we were there on the ground, running around like crazy people trying to absorb a year's worth of new furniture in less than a week's time. According to our iPhones, we walked about 7.5 miles a day in our quest to scout great design. Here's the second of three posts chronicling what we found.
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The Best of the 2016 Milan Furniture Fair, Part I

The 2016 Salone del Mobile and Fuorisalone — aka the Milan furniture fair — closes today, and we were there on the ground, running around like crazy people trying to absorb a year's worth of new furniture in less than a week's time. According to our iPhones, we walked about 7.5 miles a day in our quest to scout great design. Here's the first of three posts chronicling what we found.
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The 10 Instagrams That Made You #OMG in 2015

This week we'll be reflecting back on your favorites — the top ten stories you loved, the images you pinned, the Instagrams you thought were 100 (double underscore!). Today we're reviewing our top ten most popular Instagram posts of 2015 — enjoy our look back this week, and see you back here in 2016!
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2015, Part II

This week we announced the 2015 American Design Hot List, Sight Unseen’s unapologetically subjective annual editorial award for the 20 names to know now in American design, presented in partnership with Herman Miller. We’re devoting an entire week to interviews with this year’s honorees — get to know the second group of Hot List designers here.
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Piet Hein Eek’s Wonder Room at The Future Perfect

In case you missed it, on Saturday we recapped our favorite offerings from around town during NYCxDesign. But there was one location whose showcase we saved for its own story: The Future Perfect, where owner Dave Alhadeff has given over the entire Noho shop to Dutch designer Piet Hein Eek until mid-June.
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At the 2015 Milan Furniture Fair, Part I

Another year, another Milan. Every year we attend the behemoth furniture fair known as Salone expecting to come away with something smart to say about the current state of design. But the truth is, you spend the week bombarded with so much stuff that you're often left with just a few fleeting mental images of your favorite things, whether it's a colorful chair sheathed in Flyknit-esque sneaker material or a particularly delicious gnocchi you nearly licked off the plate. Luckily, that's what cameras are for. We shot nearly everything we saw this year, whether it was for an immediate Instagram, a file-away-for-later trend, or to share with you here, in our best of the best round-up from last week.
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At the 2014 New York Art Book Fair

Anyone who believes that publishing is dead should try attending the New York Art Book Fair on a Friday afternoon — neither day jobs nor the gorgeous weather nor the fact that the big public opening was the night before made it any less of an unequivocal mob scene at the start of this past weekend, when we spent four hours squeezing through its hot, sweaty warrens in pursuit of interesting things. We don't consider ourselves aficionados of the independent press scene, but there was still plenty for the armchair enthusiast to discover, which is part of what makes the fair so darn popular: In addition to scores of obscure art books and rare editions, which you could spend a lifetime or two attempting to browse, there are also great prints, installations, ephemera, tote bags, and even ceramics, like the paper-holders by Bjørn Mortensen of Apis Press that are pictured above. We're sure we missed at least half of what was actually on offer, but we've catalogued the rest of our favorite finds after the jump.
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At the 2014 Milan Furniture Fair, Part III

The fairgrounds at the Milan Furniture Fair are a great place to see attainable designs by established companies and talents, but typically it's not the place to go when you're scouting for new names (though this year's Satellite show, as demonstrated in yesterday's post, happened to be a surprise goldmine). For that, you have to brave the long walks, aching feet, and lack of taxis that come along with trying to get to all the shows around town, from Rossana Orlandi gallery to the far-flung Lambrate district. We say this every year, but we barely saw half of what was on offer; that said, we saw a lot of nice things.
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Sebastian Herkner’s Pulpo Containers

You might not recognize it at first glance, but Sebastian Herkner's new ultra-shiny glass Containers for the German brand Pulpo have a serious high-low thing going on — and not just in one sense, but two. Not only are they inspired by the cheap plastic containers normally used to store things like distilled water and Cheez-Balls, they're also made using a technique that's gone from rags to riches in recent history. "Mercury glass was once used as a substitute for real silverware, which was too expensive for poor people to afford," says Herkner. "Nowadays, though, it's thought of as unique and rare; there's one company in Czech Republic which specializes in mercury glass, and Pulpo produces the Containers there." Like most of our favorite tastemakers, Herkner's appreciation of both the lowly and the luxurious extends to his personal style, too, which is why we thought it fitting that he should photograph his Containers for us amidst the landscape of his own home, just outside Frankfurt. He told us more about his process and his possessions below.
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Bisque fired stock. Ahn throws three different types of clay bodies: white, medium with speckled, and a darker clay. “For a while I was using Standard clay, which is out of Pennsylvania,” she says, “but there were some problems with cracking. I think for a while in the beginning I was just trying to make anything work. After making hundreds and hundreds of things, you’re like, ‘I can’t have half my pieces crack. I need a more stable clay.’ You don’t figure those things out until you’ve fired multiple times.”

Julianne Ahn of Object & Totem

Like most ceramic artists we know, Julianne Ahn didn’t originally train at the wheel. “I went to school for undergrad in textile design, and then I got an MFA in the Fiber Materials Studies department at SAIC — which is a way more conceptual major,” the Philadelphia-based designer told us when we visited her studio this winter. “I did that on purpose to complement my undergraduate degree, which was about technique and craft-making. Somewhere in the middle, I’ve managed to find a balance between concept and design.”
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At the 2012 Milan Furniture Fair

While nothing will ever compare to the Great Ash Cloud of 2010 in terms of strange events surrounding the Milan Furniture Fair, there seems to be a fair amount of juju going on with this year's festivities — or at least with the members of our hand-picked street team, who were meant to upload photos from their bases around the Italian metropolis all this week. Pin-Up editor Felix Burrichter reported a suddenly collapsed eardrum, which stranded him in Berlin and prevented him from attending the fair entirely, while designer Sam Baron confessed his attempts to take photos at a dinner for Fiat's Lapo Eklann were sadly thwarted by bodyguards. Lucky for us, then, that we've been able to follow along on Instagram, Twitter, blogs, and a steady stream of photos arriving in our inbox from The Future Perfect's Dave Alhadeff, who's been firing off everything from potential products for his store to OMG moments to jealousy-inducing images of gelato. We'll be bringing you more photos as they roll in, but for now, here's a sampling of the first few days from one of our favorite fairgoers.
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Miranda July’s Resale Shop at Partners & Spade

For It Chooses You, a resale shop popping up at Partners & Spade in New York, Miranda July scoured the New York classifieds, buying up other people’s discards — like a collection of stolen oil paints or a pair of taxidermied deer hooves — and interviewing the sellers to discern the original meaning of those once-cherished objects.
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