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    Prada Frames at Milan Design Week explored the society, design and habitat

    Mahak Saxena

    The annual conference looked at the relationship between the natural environment and design

    Prada Frames just completed its third edition. The multidisciplinary symposium (which is a type of conference), which was curated by Italian design and research studio Formafantasma, coincided with Milan Design Week 2024. This year's conversations explored the intricate relationship between human design and the natural world.

    Since its inception in 2022, Prada Frames has served as a dynamic platform, fostering insightful conversations led by thought leaders, underpinned by a robust scientific and educational ethos. This year, under the theme "Being Home," the symposium embarked on a profound examination of our domestic habitats, transcending conventional perspectives to address pressing contemporary concerns.

    Delving beyond the notion of comfort, it scrutinised the multifaceted social, economic, and political dimensions that have historically shaped our perception of home — a sanctuary that accompanies us from infancy to adulthood.

    Hosted at the Bagatti Valsecchi Museum in Milan, a preserved nineteenth-century neo-Renaissance residence transformed into a museum, the setting provided a rich backdrop for intimate dialogues. Reflecting the symposium's thematic exploration, the museum's diverse spaces, including the living room, bedroom, dining room, bathroom, and library, offered a tangible parallel to the discourse unfolding within.

    Distinguished scholars such as Paola Antonelli, Brigitte Baptiste, Kate Crawford, Jack Halberstam, David Van Severen, Anna Puigjaner, Alice Rawsthorn, Isabella Rossellini, and Françoise Vergès headlined this year's lectures.

    To ensure global reach, Prada Frames introduced a podcast series, featuring 16 episodes which were recorded during the event. The series will be unveiled weekly starting April 17, available on dedicated playlists on Spotify & Apple Podcasts, as well as on the Koozarch website.

    From its inaugural focus on forests in 2022, dissecting the modern timber industry's dynamics, to the following year's exploration of the ethical and aesthetic implications of materials, Prada Frames has consistently pushed boundaries. In doing so, it highlights the pivotal role of design, science and collaboration as catalysts for transformative change.

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