I use the beautiful images by Giuliano Koren for the Edition of 9 project by Something Good (more about that below) to tell you about a promising meeting that takes place today in Florence: ‘The craftsmen of the 21st century: culture, technology, new media and handy work, promoted by Regione Toscana, Toscana Promozione, CNA Toscana and ARTEX.
It will all be about witnessing the connection between design and craftsmanship and about how the two, together, try to find a sustainable future through the creation of new business and communication models centered on the web. More about this issue here.
The names of the ketnote speakers are interesting. There is Carlo Ratti, director and founder of the MIT Senseable City Lab (he will talk about eshops, the potential of blogging and of online sales, the development of new technologies); Stefano Micelli (author of Futuro Artigiano), who will illustrate scenarios of contemporary creativity by offering case studies of companies that reached success by joining new media and craftsmanship; and journalist Simone Cosimi (from Wired.it and Style.it) who will propose a specific focus on the makers’ movement and on craftsmanship 2.0. There will be also many designers or professonals involved in design: Francesca Mazzocchi from Digital Makers, Super Duper Hats, Fattelo!, Giulia Tognellini of Thatsarte, Elisa Delogu and Lucia Principe of Pesci Pneumatici.
It’s a collection of home objects by international designers, realized by Italian craftsmen and introduced at the last Fuori Salone in Milan. It’s a project that perfectly fits with the theories that will be explored in Florence. Edition of 9 is basically a tale, conceived to share with the world the dialogue that has always existed between creators and craftsmen. When people look at an object, they normally only capture its form, and sometimes the idea that originated it. But the essence of the project (the red thread that binds the issue of what to do and how to do it, the meticulous search for the best and most performing material, technology and expertise to actually make it) escapes the most. The 9 designers who were involved in the Editions thus created stories centered on small, local production facilities, on their love for materials, their care for detail and their passion for technical and formal experimentations. Design thus emerges as an ongoing, developing process, carried out by many people at the same time. And digital technologies as the most meaningful tool to carry out projects such as this one despite the huge physical distances between the players involved.