Daniel Libeskind’s Water Tower is just one of many highlights from Alessi’s spring/summer 2017 collection. Also in the lineup: extraordinary accessories by Zaha Hadid, UNStudio, and up-and-coming designers that we can’t wait to see more from.
Daniel Libeskind paid tribute to Milanese architect Aldo Rossi, by replicating one of New York’s most iconic “urban artifacts” in miniature form. The scale of the rings on the tiny towers is true to life, with the height of each descending towards the bottom, to maintain the vessel’s structural integrity. The mirror-finish stainless steel top holds small trinkets or could serve as a sugar bowl, and sits on a latticework base that is available in a matching or matte-black finish.
That flat-black finish that has become so popular on Alessi’s products is also one of the options for the Lovely Breeze centrepiece, by Japanese designer Sakura Adachi. Tipped on its side, the laser-cut stainless steel piece holds fruit or sweets, but when the contents are removed, a weight in the rounded base slowly brings the leaf-inspired surface upright, with sifting particles inside whispering a gentle sound reminiscent of wind rushing through the leaves on a tree.
Ben van Berkel and his firm UNStudio introduced Giro, a new flatware set that recalls the architect’s previous collaboration with Alessi: the Ribbon wine rack. Applying UNStudio’s signature “architectural twist”– often seen in the firm’s buildings – to each piece results in a surprisingly ergonomic handle. In 18/10 polished stainless steel, the line includes a full complement of serving utensils.
Industrial designer trio Busetti, Garuti, and Redaelli were still just recent graduates of the Istituto Europeo di Design when they pitched Alessi on this concept that reimagines the act of sprinkling salt from the fingers. Pizzico’s soft silicone body is filled via the stainless base and salt can be poured or pinched out of two openings at the top. The seasoning can even be ground to a finer grain by massaging the shaker.
Forma is one of two projects that Zaha Hadid had in the works with Alessi before her untimely death last year, and the only one we can expect to see realized. While the technical complications of the other piece were too great to overcome, this cheese grater, with its irregularly patterned grating surface, is a testament to the brand’s manufacturing capabilities. The grater sits in a curvaceous base that is reminiscent of the architect’s buildings, while the tool itself evokes a smooth sea stone that tucks comfortably into the palm.
Dutch designer Titus Wybenga encourages us to take a little time for ourselves with T-Timepiece. This tea infuser, which mimics a classic pocket watch, is the result of a workshop collaboration with Dutch university TU Delft. It joins Alessi’s Objets-Bijoux collection of small, functional objects intended for everyday use.