Wood and Silicon

Hosted by Marco Sammicheli

with Nelly Ben Hayoun, Martino Gamper

16.04 → 7 PM

Wood and Silicon

Wood and silicon are two materials essential to design and to shape our future. Both coming from nature, but each defined by and offering unique attributes. With its sturdiness, versatility and sustainability wood enables the construction of physical structures and objects, whereas silicon is at the core of technological innovation. These two diverse materials and approaches to design are mirrored in the opposed practices of Martino Gamper and Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stépanian and their different ways to envision the future as relentless innovators: two well-defined aesthetics, two ways of navigating the world, two ideas of designing for others.

Host: Marco Sammicheli

Marco Sammicheli is the curator of the design, fashion, crafts branch at Triennale Milano and director of Museo del Design Italiano. Therefore, his conception of design spans across its entire spectrum, its array of opposite meanings, and pluralis- tic forms and approaches. The tension established between the contrasting practices and currents shaping the past, present and future of the subject is, therefore, always under scrutiny for Sammicheli. His curation of a plethora of publications on design next to his editorial collaboration with the likes of Il Sole 24 Ore and Wallpaper*, make Sammicheli one of the most authoritative and cherished voices on design in Italy and beyond. At the core of Sammicheli’s vision and practice lies the willingness to promote and em- power the city of Milan as an urban platform for the development of new creative industries.

Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stépanian

Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stépanian PhD (she/they) is an award winning designer of experiences, creative director and director with over a decade of experience working to build platforms that support plurality, the creation of organized communities and 'impossible' productions, public events, expeditions and projects with socio-political impacts. She is also a filmmaker, radio host, keynote speaker, amateur boxer and the author and director of five feature-length movies. She is the founder and director of the International Space Orchestra the world’s first orchestra of NASA space scientists and astronauts; and the founder of the tuition-free university-University of the Underground. She is known for challenging institutions from within through events, and she has done so at the United Nations, NASA, International Academy of Astronautics, or the International Astronautical Federation amongst many others.

Martino Gamper

Martino Gamper OBE is an Italian designer living and operating in London. Having trained as a furniture maker, Gamper is faithful to the materials which represent the starting point for his artefacts that pander to human behaviours. His vision of the future is rooted in rethinking the past, finding the conceptual in the physicality of reworked materials. Since 2006 the evolving project 100 Chairs in 100 Days, focusing on collecting discarded seats and reconfiguring their design, is at the core of Gamper’s practice. It stands as a testament to his materic and political approach to the subject, which retains conceptual roots in the Italian tradition of radical design. As a matter of fact, other curated works draw inspiration from Enzo Mari’s self-assembly philosophy. In 2023 his prolific activity was recognised by the British government with the awarding of an OBE for services to design.