Form&Seek ‘Tactile Matter’@At Ventura Future, Connecting Humans to Objects

12.04.2019 | By ELENA LONGARI

The London based collective brings to the endless table of Milan Design Week something that is very dear amongst the principles underpinning good design; a way to establish a connection with the ‘user’. We spoke to Form&Seek founder Bilge Nur Saltik about what their showcase at Ventura Future will give to the visitors stopping by during their Fuorisalone marathon.

With more than 90 international designers to pick from, Form&Seek has been collecting talents and cutting-edge works for two years. Back then, the idea came almost as an afterthought from 9 university mates who had just graduated from the Royal College of Art in London. From their first exhibition at Istanbul Design Week titled ‘No Borders’, Form&Seek’s provocative vision managed to go well beyond national borders.

D360:Can you explain the title of your Milan Design Week show ’Tactile Matter’?

Bilge Nur Saltik :Form&Seek is focussed on processes. We were always interested in alternative materials, material techniques, and crafted intriguing products. For ‘Tactile matter’ exhibition we curated a show that gathers designs that has experimental materials, contemporary manufacturing techniques, and products that tactile with form, texture, and color. The theme aims to gather design objects that stimulate your senses and evoke curiosity and familiarity. 

Thing Thing

D360: What criteria do the projects and works from the different designers part of Form&Seek follow? 

Bilge Nur Saltik : As a design studio, we believe in the power of being together. By curating shows we are creating a platform for designers to showcase their work in international platforms as well as creating a community, a collective. For each show, we pick a theme and invite designers to join our collective show. Form&Seek design studio researches designers and personally pick projects to curate the show. As a team, we are looking for designers with cutting-edge design works that work with new materials or exploring the new potential of conventional material. We search for designers working with interesting processes and design objects that are a little whimsical and strong in terms of form, texture, function or story.

Zhekai Zheng

Cécile Bichon, Paris

Originally a graphic designer, Cècil Bichon’s aesthetic through her ceramics is a ‘primitive’ vision of the world: try to look at these objects, don’t they all trigger the question ‘what is it?’.  She is able to take us away from our rationality, thanks to the use of a particular technique:

I make every piece without throwing, modelling or slipcasting. Furthermore, I barely touch each piece until they are completely dry. I let the material flow in relative freedom in order to achieve the most natural shapes as possible.

Chih-Wei Chang, Taiwan

Human and emotions are the territories explored by the Taiwanese designer through a poetic interpretation: her ‘tactile matter’ comes in the shape of a series of lamps for Milan Design Week 2019. Playing in a 3-dimensional geometry, the designer is able to create a direct interaction between human and object.


We make nice things that will spice up you and your little one’s space.

Pendants lamps: they are the ultimate idea in terms of establishing a unique relationship between us and the objects that décor our spaces. Imagine one of those double long necklaces you can wear in multiple ways, even knotted: the boutique feel of Figg’s lamps recreate the very same little bijoux feeling.

Jule Waibel, Germany/UK/Indonesia

The soothing effect of origami applied to everyday objects are at the base of Jule Waibel’s aesthetic, according to which she creates ‘the unfolded universe’. She uses pleated patterns to turn everything into new shapes, yet embodying the effortless simplicity of geometry.

Sophie Yan, Detroit USA

Lifetime objects are Sophie Yan’s take on sustainability: objects that are durable can help us solve the problem or lowering waste. For Milan Design Week 2019 she presents the Knottoman 2.0, as series of ottomans which incorporates both industrial and craft processes. A different upholstery process that makes these ottomans more versatile, as they can be used as baskets too

Dee Clements of Studio Herron Dee Clements

Have you ever heard of contemporary nomadism and floor-based culture? The 3D textiles created by Dee Clements explore these topics according to the perspective of textiles telling the stories of the most emotional side of the objects surrounding us in our private spaces. 

Studio Sarmite, Sarmite Polakova, Amsterdam/Riga

PineSkins makes us think about how to employ leftover materials in a way that can appeal to anyone who wants to have nice and useful things in their homes whilst thinking about the environment. In her project she uses pine bark to shape rugs; she also adds extra information about the tree itself, such as age, to create an authentic sense of familiarity with the object.

I am fascinated by the relation between the human and the world around him. I believe we live in a bipolar era where mythical meets the anthropological and the mathematical – the inanimate.