For the first time in its 57 years, the Salone del Mobile has translated its week-long, city-wide event into the venturing literature of a manifesto. The manifesto credits both the furniture fair and its host city of Milan as instigators of influence in the search for innovative design thinking and craftsmanship. The manifesto outlines the importance of young designers interpreting their own cultural heritage, and establishes the need for a general investigative research practice that values long-term thinking. This focus on qualitative thinking can be most clearly identified in the global frontier, which is post-speculative sustainability in design.

The manifesto is not the only translation the Salone brings forward this year. A contextualization of the objectives laid out in the manifesto will take the form of a 500-sq-m space at the Piazza del Duomo in front of the neoclassical Palazzo Reale. The former royal palace has always represented for Milan the movement of time as it has been the crux of historic events that have influenced not only the function of the building, but also its form as a totem of Milan’s cultural currency.

The Palazzo is therefore the perfect backdrop for the installation of La Natura dell’Arbitare, or Living Nature – a structure housing all four seasons at once. Created with design studio Carlo Ratti Associati, the structure seeks to unpack the potential for future creation and the application of energy-saving technology to be utilized in urban and domestic spaces. Living Nature offers visitors a green place to consider the potential of sustainable technology and design and its relationship with the essential elements of our surroundings: our bodies, our nature and our culture.