Clemens Ascher’s ‘Of Rainbows and Other Monuments’

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                                The Bertone Rainbow was an oddball design even 42 years ago when unveiled as a concept car at the 1976 Turin Motor Show. Designed by Marcello Gandini for the Italian-based automotive styling and coachbuilding company, Gruppo Bertone, the attention the Rainbow earned for its sudden abbreviated angularity was only eclipsed by its genuinely cool retractable hardtop design that transformed the car from a coupé into a targa. The trapezoidal concept mostly faded into obscurity – at least amongst the general public – but has since reappeared in new light recently thanks to photographer <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">Clemens Ascher</a>.
London-based photographer and artist Clemens Ascher’s “Of Rainbows and Other Monuments” is a striking triptych that breathes new life into the mostly forgotten peculiar prototype. Colored in vibrant hues of yellow, red, and blue, the Bertone Rainbow attains a fresh graphical presence of a vehicle not from a forgotten past, but hinting of an imaginary
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A Commanding Wireless Earphones Design by Dotcom Creation

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                                The looped silhouette of the DP-2 by <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Dotcom Creation</a> is unlike any other traditional in-ear or over-the-ear headphones in both form and function. Bucking convention of other wired or wireless earphones, the DP-2 sits just within the vicinity of the ear canal, hanging and held in place by the shape of the human ear, allowing the listener to be audibly cognizant of their surroundings while listening to music or other audio.
Designed by the former head of Creative Product Design Taipei at Sony Mobile Communication, Jun Katsunuma’s obsidian loop earphones design offers the appearance of the bottom half of the Mac Command key (⌘) separated from the whole. Each closed loop opens up with a twist, designed to be worn attached to the ear like hoops earrings. The all-black design is a darker, more ornamental counterpart to the now-ubiquitous and arguably more tech-conspicuous and all-white Apple Airpods. On the ear the
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A Minimally Modern and Modular Kitchenette for Millennials

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                                It seems particularly ironic my friend who is a technologist and founder of the gastronomical virtual reality experience, <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Project Nourished</a>, has lived in a Downtown Los Angeles industrial space for the last several years sans kitchen. He told me he&#8217;s made it work out of necessity, using a combination of a portable inductive cooktop and a utility sink on wheels. I definitely thought of his past predicament as I helped him move last week to a new place outfitted with a legitimate kitchen, thinking how the challenge of cost of rent versus available space can require sacrifices such as his while living in many of the most dense and expensive cities.
Royal College of Art graduate, Yu Li’s portable kitchen concept Assembly addresses this growing need amongst young professionals struggling to meet the desire to cook against the limitations of space. Li envisions an inductive-technology cooking surface nearly as svelte
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A 3D-Printed Garment Envisions an Underwater Future

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                                Designer and material scientist <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Jun Kamei</a> is looking ahead toward solutions to help people adapt to the sea level rise caused by climate change, predicted its effects upon between 0.5 &#8211; 3 billion globally along some of our most populous cities. His vision <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Amphibio</a> is a 3D printed amphibious garment designed to work with, not against, the possibility many of us will increasingly live in close proximity to water.
Designed at the Royal College of Art in collaboration with the RCA-IIS Tokyo Design Lab, Kamei studied how aquatic insects use a thin layer of air trapped across their carapace, a super-hydrophobic surface that operates as a gas-exchanging gill. Noting this evolutionary adaptations, Kamei developed a special porous hydrophobic material engineered to allow underwater breathing by extracting oxygen from the surrounding water while also removing accumulated carbon dioxide in similar fashion, forming what might appear as entomological-inspired haute couture.
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Orbit Brings an Element of the Tangible to Digital Music

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                                With digital devices and appliances of every sort now featuring a touchscreen, Belgian designer Senna Graulus noticed a discrepancy between the purported element of touch offered by current technology versus the experience of interacting with genuinely tactile objects. The <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Orbit</a> music streamer offers a rotational dial system based upon the influence of two planetary bodies upon one another, in turn reintroducing what was lost in the migration toward an increasingly touchscreen existence.
Composed of two components – a cylindrical controller “dial” and a base – the Orbit’s primary function is accessing and controlling a listener’s digital music playlist. Streaming playlists are accessed by picking up the top cylindrical controller and placing it alongside the base within its orbit.

A variety of materials like felt and aluminum were explored for optimal tactile satisfaction between user and device. The base is weighed down with cylindrical sheets of lead to add some perceptible heft

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Slide Borrows From Smartphone UI to Keep Things Cool and Minimal

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                                &#8220;Slide to unlock&#8221; – It&#8217;s a command now practically synonymous with our interactions with smartphones. But what if you applied the same user interface to access something entirely different without a screen interface? That&#8217;s exactly what Korean designers Hooseong Lee and Beomsic Jeon have explored with <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Slide</a>, a design concept that blows away preconceived notions of what a fan should look like and how it operates.
Slide a finger across a screen, and access to your phone is granted. Swipe up on the front surface of the Slide, and the bowl-shaped air circulator slides upward from a previously hidden horizontal position to a range of angled positions, offering an upward and outward directional flow. Though Dyson fans have long tilted with a similar sliding design, the Slide offers a clever divergence from nearly every other household tabletop or floor fan by abandoning the verticality required to move air from one
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KUF Studio Puts a Twist On Window Blinds

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                                Window shade systems all operate similarly, either requiring a manual pull mechanism or a <a href="" data-wpel-link="internal">motorized system</a> to control roller shades or a slat system for purposes of controlling light and privacy. But designer and goldsmith Kia Utzon-Frank has imagined a solution offering a higher degree of control and customizability – <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">a cordless shuttering system</a> for windows inviting users to create openings in shapes and patterns previously unrealizable.
The KUFtwist, formerly the Louver Twisting Comb, uses one or a series of “comb” modules arranged to move across a vertical plane and twist material individually into states of open or close as the mechanism is moved upwards or downwards. In multiples the combs can be moved into unique arrangements normally unattainable using traditional louver blinds or roller shades.

An early prototype of the KUFtwist. Image: Michael Bodiam

Kia Utzon-Frank has refined various iterations of her system throughout her career, beginning with
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BMW and MIT Envision Automotive Interiors That Can Change Shape

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                                In the near future car interiors may transcend the limitations of today&#8217;s fixed passenger layouts, capable of morphing into different configurations as desired using adaptable 3D-printed inflatable structures as developed by researchers at BMW Design Department in collaboration with MIT’s Self-Assembly Laboratory.
On display at the V&A for The Future Starts Here exhibition, the collaboration between the BMW Design Department and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Self-Assembly Lab explores the possibilities offered by complex printed silicone assemblages connected with precise pneumatic controls to manipulate volume and shape. The effects are not unlike watching the initial malleable bodies of arthropods as they emerge from larval state. In configurable groupings, the technology is envisioned to offer automotive interior designs the ability to design cars with cabins capable of transforming, adapting, and morphing from one state to another. At the touch of a button, seating could be moved, or even added, to different sections of
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MINI Living and FreelandBuck Unveil the Urban Cabin Concept at the LA Design Festival

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                                At just 160 square feet, it&#8217;s a wonder the <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Los Angeles MINI LIVING Urban Cabin</a> fits a bedroom, dining room, kitchenette, bathroom, and entryway atrium in service of &#8220;contemplation&#8221; all within the confines of its micro-cabin dimensions. There&#8217;s even a small rooftop garden crowning the Urban Cabin. Yet, the spatial origami realized by MINI LIVING in collaboration with Los Angeles architecture firm <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">FreelandBuck</a> assembled atop of the ROW DTLA for this <span style="letter-spacing: 0.13px;">past weekend&#8217;s </span><a style="letter-spacing: 0.13px;" href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">LA Design Festival</a><span style="letter-spacing: 0.13px;"> presents small space living not as compromise, but instead as an opportunity for ideas as expansive and transformative as the city it was designed to represent.</span>

Corinna Natter, Experience Designer and Designer of the Urban Cabins at MINI LIVING, explains the explorative urbanist concepts represented by the Los Angeles Urban Cabin project, noting its specificity and adaptability to the lifestyle and climate of Los Angeles.

Graphic: FreelandBuck

The collaborative nature of the Los Angeles Urban Cabin is
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The Tone Lab Synth Stacks Songs Like Sandwiches

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                                Industrial designer <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">Colin Hearon&#8217;s Tone Lab</a> digital instrument design was awarded first place “Best in Show” at <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">Ohio State University’s 2018 Design Exhibition</a> for simplifying the complexity inherent in learning how to compose music by turning the process into an intuitive physical act: stacking musical modules into songs, the musical equivalent of paint by numbers.
The Tone Lab is the outcome of research conducted by Hearon who found a sequential and linear approach to “building” music proved to be the fastest and easiest method for beginners to most easily become acquainted with layering effects required to compose a track. The experimental approach resulted in the incorporation of stackable tile blocks programmed with specific sounds and instructions. In action it’s imaginable to see using the Tone Lab as the construction of a sandwich of sound. Obviously the limitations of building tracks using this method relegates the Tone Lab as a beginner’s instrument.
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BMW Concept M8 Gran Coupe Is Designed to Polarize

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                                Most cars are designed to embody well established shapes, proportions and colors already associated with beauty. Beyond purely conceptual exercises or exceptional new models, automotive manufacturers rarely set out to tip the scales toward risk, especially rare in regards to cars adorned with an established lineage. Yet, the German giant <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">BMW</a> is setting out to shake things up with their newly unveiled Concept M8 Gran Coupe &#8211; a design expressing aspirations to redefine what a flagship means sitting at the vertex of their line-up.
Domagoj Dukec, Vice President Design BMW M and BMW i, says:
The BMW Concept M8 Gran Coupe is designed to stir things up, to polarise – it should move you emotionally. With this car we want to reach people who are looking for something special and who want to stand out from the crowd. Here, BMW M is unmistakably taking luxury out of its comfort zone.
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The Handyfan Popsicle is a Deliciously Cool Concept

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                                There was an undeniable sense of deja-vu upon seeing the efforts of Korean industrial design student 7 Nepo pop into my feed. His popsicle-shaped design, the <a href="h"  rel="noopener" data-wpel-link="internal">Handyfan Popsicle</a> looks remarkably similar to a design I proposed years ago working as a toy designer while heading up a new line of a children&#8217;s collection of treat-based accessories (unfortunately tooling costs nixed the project).
The novelty and appeal of the design relies upon our childhood associations of good times with cooling down with a popsicle in hand. The inclusion of a leather strap serves the purpose of portability, especially appealing to those used to traveling by crowded public transportation during the summer months. Though, one has to wonder how the user is supposed to hold up the fan in a vertical position with the proposed soft strap; if redesigned with a wrist loop with a snap, the fan could conceivably be hung from
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The Future of Wearables Is Elastic Electronic Skin

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                                Japanese researchers at the <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">University of Tokyo&#8217;s Graduate School of Engineering</a> have developed a highly elastic and thin elastic skin display capable of exhibiting simple characters and even moving graphics with an array of 16 x 24 micro LEDs. Its purpose extends beyond skin deep novelty: the minimally invasive medical system was developed to keep doctors connected with their senior patients ill served by current smartphone and computer UI.

The LED display is stretchable by as much as 45% of its original length. Researchers are working to improve coverage while reducing costs of the skin-tight health monitoring system.

The e-skin health monitoring device combines a simple active matrix LED display with an integrated wireless biomedical sensor system. The miniature sensor detects touch, pressure, and temperature, allowing medical professionals to keep tabs on the health of their patients, while also offering the ability to send back a simple-to-understand assessment feedback using
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Loight: A Rechargable Lighting Concept Inspired by Lanterns

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                                To many people, being energy efficient is a priority these days. We all know we can do our part in reducing our personal carbon footprint by doing simple acts like turning off the lights when not in use or decreasing our usage of heaters and coolers. What if we can take it further though, by incorporating a lifestyle change that dates back to the 1800s? Inspired by the efficiency of lanterns, industrial designer <a href="" data-wpel-link="external"  rel="external noopener noreferrer">Zahra Ghiasi</a> designed the concept of the Loight rechargeable light that challenges us to evaluate our dependency on light.
In theory, the Loight light is a personal light that you carry with you everywhere in the home. Each family member would have their own Loight and it’s only when the entire family is together that the room is the brightest. The light intensity can be adjusted depending on different situations and can be charged wirelessly with its
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Bee Hospital Investigates the Decline of the Bee Population

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Research has shown that the bee population has been on the decline which has the potential to cause major issues with global agriculture. Shau Heng Li, of Shau Design, set out to investigate the issue, specifically Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) where most of the worker bees leave the hive for good, through a concept that takes place in 2030. The Bee Hospital is a series of objects designed to help bees survive the deteriorating planet by implementing them into urban environments. The collection includes a mite guard dispenser, a bee-detecting device, and a supplement center that offer probiotics, nutrients, and chemicals that help with bee survival in areas where traditionally bees are not kept. The supplement center provides essential nutrients and probiotics that allow the bees to digest harmful pesticides that seep into the soil during farming. The mite guard dispenser entices bees through the use of syrup and
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BMW Concept X7 iPerformance: An Emotional Redefinition of Luxury

                                <em>The following post is brought to you by <a href=""  rel="nofollow noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">BMW</a>. Our partners are hand-picked by the Design Milk team because they represent the best in design.</em>
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                                <a href=""  rel="nofollow noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">BMW’s</a> reputation as a premiere automotive brand was established by an enduring commitment to the exhilaration and joy established between its cars and their drivers – an automaker whose design, technological innovations, and expressive engineering have always served an emotional experience delivered first and foremost by the connection between driver with pedals, wheels, and brake. Now, BMW sets out to achieve another level conceived to serve the highest segment in demand of an elevated experience of exclusive luxury – a brand within a brand of sorts, complete with its own newly designed monochromatic logo harkening to the manufacturer’s roundel first used 100 years ago: Bayerische Motoren Werke.
“For these people, life is all about making the best possible use of the time available to them,” says
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Instrumentum is the Most Sleek Toolset for Designers

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                                The design language of everyday household tools – hammers and screwdrivers – has long been dictated by the maxim of &#8220;form as function&#8221;. But designer <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Abidur Chowdhury</a> recognizes there&#8217;s still room for redefining these most basic of tools with a design language less intimidating and aggressive in nature, specifically one honed to welcome novice users.
Forgoing the overdesigned and extraneous moulding in service of ergonomic handles, Chowdhury’s Instrumentum 3-piece kit serves both form and function by merging separate elements into what seems like one consistent forged form. The hammer is actually made of two parts, both head and handle made from forged high carbon heat treated steel for strength and durability.

“The idea started as some thoughts on a train in my notebook which I carry around with me (top left), where they were culminated into an Instagram posts in early June 2017 (bottom left). Eventually (as promised in that

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The CEILI.AIR Air Purifier Hangs Above the Rest

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                                In most households, open counter space in the kitchen can be as valuable as San Francisco real estate. That problem is the impetus for Korean designer <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-id="18012587" data-wpel-link="external">Changho Lee&#8217;s</a> novel environmental appliance concept design – the <a href=""  rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">CEILI.AIR</a> – a combination air purification system and overhead light source in one.
Finished with a soft palette of decor-friendly shades, Lee’s CEILI.AIR design looks like something straight out of the catalog of B&O Play wireless speakers; the soft curvilinear exterior is fashioned to work in harmony with the rest of a room as a functional and discrete element within the kitchen. But unlike a wireless audio speaker emanating music, the soft fabric covered front and perforated edges of the CEILI.AI is intended to pull ambient air in for filtration and dehumidification. Since the unit is designed to be hung from the ceiling, Lee imagined the unit’s controls would be best accessed
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The BMW i8 Roadster Teases It’s Taking Its Top Down

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                                We&#8217;re still harboring lingering longings since our close-up rendezvous in Milan, Italy with <a href=""  rel="noopener noreferrer" data-wpel-link="internal"> BMW&#8217;s last</a> &#8220;tease you now, please you later&#8221; concept vehicle. But where the Concept 8 Series intent was clearly intended to whet the palate, the Munich-based automotive&#8217;s latest teaser showcasing the lines of the BMW i8 Roadster reveals an electrifying peek of a car with more concrete plans.
Take what you already know about the electric hybrid BMW i8, surgically remove the top, and you’ve got the upcoming BMW i8 Roadster. BMW used their social media channels for the announcement, but details are scant and preliminary:
BMW i8 Roadster plug-in hybrid BMW eDrive: energy consumption (combined): 15,4 kWh/100 km. Fuel consumption (combined): 2,0 l/100 km, CO2 emissions (combined): 45 g/km.  Fuel consumption is determined in accordance with the ECE driving cycle (93/116/EC), made up of approximately one-third urban traffic and two-thirds extra-urban driving (based on the distance covered).
The camouflaged profile seems to have kept the
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EQUILIBRIUM Brings a Minimalist Approach to Seating with a Twist

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                                EQUILIBRIUM is a project by Maria Dal Canto and Lena Holzer that involves three objects typically spotted outdoors in gardens and parks – benches, loungers, and picnic tables. While each design is different, they&#8217;re joined by their minimalist design approach, as well as by using the same material. That&#8217;s not all though&#8230;each one requires cooperation between another person when it&#8217;s time to sit.
The collection includes a chaise lounge, a bench, and a table that all feature simple iron frames that tend to retreat to the background with the red rope taking the spotlight. When not in use, the rope remains slack with gentle curves waiting to embrace the sitter. But it’s not just about the look of the three objects – it’s also about the game built in that becomes apparent as soon as someone goes to sit down. If a person sits by themselves, they will either fall through
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