Design enthusiast all fired up

Design enthusiast Mark Cowden, pictured checking fire curtains during production at Escea, is looking forward to a trip to Italy next week. Photo by Sally Rae.
Design enthusiast Mark Cowden, pictured checking fire curtains during production at Escea, is looking forward to a trip to Italy next week. Photo by Sally Rae.
For years, the Milan furniture fair has been on design enthusiast Mark Cowden's list of ''must-go places''.

The annual event, also known as the Salone Internazionale del Mobile di Milano, is touted as the largest trade fair of its kind, highlighting the latest in furniture and design from around the world.

Mr Cowden, brand manager at Escea, is heading to Italy next week for the event and while it was a personal trip, he would be looking at design trends, what was going on in the design world and where Escea's products could fit in, he said.

The fair was spread over 140,000sq m. To put that in perspective, Escea's factory at Green Island is 3000sq m.

''So, sore feet,'' he quipped.

Buses ran around the area, both internally and externally, and it attracted more than 300,000 visitors, of which about 6500 were media.

There were more than 950 Italian exhibitors and more than 300 from other countries.

Mr Cowden was particularly looking forward to seeing an area set aside for about 700 young designers, chosen from universities and design schools around the world, to display their work.

He had never been to Italy before and for an artist, photographer and design enthusiast like himself, it had to be a place that was ''pretty fun'', with such a design focus, he said.

As far as Escea was concerned, it was very, very early days in Europe for the company but the potential was ''huge''.

It had distributors based in Norway and the United Kingdom.

 

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