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At Heimtextil, the Future Is Urban

Jan 21, 2018

FranklinTill turned the Theme Park exhibition at the interiors trade fair into an exploration of the future of city spaces

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Text by Rab Messina
Photography by Jeroen van der Wielen

According to data from the UN, by 2100 the whole world will be living in cities —for those keeping tally, we’ve already surpassed the halfway mark today. With this scenario in mind, the 2018 edition of the Heimtextil trade fair asked trend forecasters FranklinTill to show us the way into the future.

The result at the Theme Park was The Future is Urban, a nine-pavillion exploration of the future of our city spaces, taking into account lifestyles, distinct environments, spatial design and colour trends.

Take, for example, The Flexible Space: with real estate prices going up in increasingly populated cities, homes become smaller and need to adapt to the needs of their occupants. With ingenuity, designers Studiomama created a 13-square-metre home with three modules fit for sleeping, working, eating, washing, relaxing and storage.

And what happens when the great outdoors seem to be light years away from a megalopolis? In The Healthy Space, FranklinTill presented a plant diagnosis system that would allow to match the requirements of individual workers to a set of indoor vegetation.

The Remade Space provided options for turning waste into reusable materials —for example, Max Lamb’s benches made from solid textile— and The Maker Space explored open-source technologies and consumers’ participation in the growing DIY culture —something visitors could explore further in a section called The Fab Lab, with the work of open-source fashion label The Post-Couture Collective and the algorithm-based customisation patterns of design duo Convivial Studio.

Since the future points to dwellers becoming more involved, more responsible and more demanding with their homeware purchases, Kate Franklin and Caroline Till asked all the right questions —and got some very satisfying answers.

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