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Martin Mansoor www.instagram.com/tokomansoor

Dutch Design in Milan? SOLIDIFIED!

By 18-04-2024

ONE WEEK ABOUT Milan Design Week 2024
Day 3 – report by Martin Mansoor

A few years ago – on my umpteenth catering job at the Salone – I spoke to many designers, curators and other die-hard people from the famous Paesi Bassi, the Low Countries with perhaps still the Highest Degree of participation in the Salone, both in visitor numbers and exhibitors.

What emerged above all?

Do the high costs of organising a presentation in Milan also the Salone del Mobile still justify the final output? To stay in the jargon: how many leads come afterwards, how many really valuable contacts arise, not to say sales contracts?

But: after all, as the old Dutch saying goes, spend first and collect later…

Is anyone selling anything at all except knickknacks, fake leather bags or IKEA balls in the enormous presentation of the furniture giant?

The overkill at the Salone keeps beating you to death, discouraging you and preferring to go Netflix or Disneyplus (very nicely present everywhere in Tortana!) in your overpriced far-flung flat where you share the doubter with a snorer, but no you, as a Dutch Designer, also have to network, see things for yourself, which are then sometimes even more beautiful and shrewd than what you have wrought in 5 years.

You go to Bar Basso to take heart and meet like-minded people from the Dutch Colony, you talk about the weather, the food, your presentation and its success or disappointing attendance.

But the fact is that Dutch Design is still very prominent in and around Milan, Dutch is the official language on the streets and in the restaurants, again you run into this person or that person from the design scene: you might think ‘oh no, it’s him or her or them again!’. But keep exchanging polite phrases ever they too think ‘did you see him again with that stupid hat!’.

SOLIDIFIED curated by David Heldt proves that even the latest breakthrough generation of Dutch Design still believes in Milan: in a wonderful location, there is a fairytale presentation by Jesse Visser, Umut Yamac, Rick Tegelaar, Rive Roshan and Form Editions: no expense has been spared in location and presentation: how fk proud I am that I was allowed to do the catering there!

Dutch Design believes in Milan: after all, still the leading design fair in the world, if you are there, you belong even if no contract is signed, your name is established forever!

Solidified, solidified is your reputation a Milano e tutto al mondo!

Martin Mansoor, Milano, 17 April 2024