Verge, Moving Forward After 100 Years

By Jo Phillips

The world of product design has been with us for such a long time now that hardly any of us think twice when we pick up a cup or toothbrush, a kitchen implement a mobile phone or even a dog lead.  That’s the whole point of product design; in essence we don’t have to think about how we use something (if well designed, obviously), as it should be intuitive as well as pleasing to the hand and eye. This all comes down to  making life easier and simpler.
Panasonic was founded in 1918 by Konosuke Matshushita a young inventor with near to no training. He vision was to “make everyone’s life good.” The very first launch was a simple attachment plug that allowed people to plug in more appliances in the home, so simple an idea to us now, but revolutionary at the time.  They were also one of the first companies to have an in-house design team in the world.  In Japan, Konosuke is considered the father of electronics and design, and his vision is still very much the DNA of the brand. 
It’s their 100th birthday this year and in celebration they are marking it with a TRANSITIONS” at Milan design week.
They describe the installation as:-
an immersive installation at Milan design week exploring the future of air quality Panasonic are marking their 100-year anniversary at Milan Design Week with a landmark installation and series of talks called ‘TRANSITIONS by Panasonic Design’. The installation explores the role design will play in improving our physical environment and emotional wellbeing in the future. It also marks Panasonic’s transition towards a new creative philosophy: designing products and services and experiences that go beyond physical products to address emotions, the environment, and wellbeing.

A large scale immersive water-drop pavilion containing the purest air in Milan. The immersive installation is contained within a large ‘water-drop pavilion’, 20m in diameter, in the impressive courtyard of the Pinacoteca de Brera, home of the Brera Art Gallery.  Visitors are invited to embark on a transition of their own: from the busy fair environment to a moment of calm and relaxation. Inside, they are transported from the hectic fair into an oasis of calm with the cleanest, purest air in Milan from Panasonic’s latest air purification technology. Visitors will wander through a cooling, ultra-fine, dry mist created from Panasonic’s green air conditioning technology .  There will be an Aamospheric sound design, lighting and visuals will add to the calming experience.



The installation is subtitled ‘Air Inventions’, referencing Panasonic’s transition to products and experiences that address the more intangible elements of everyday life.  Such with many other items seen at Salone De Mobile much of what we have to look forward to in the world design will be all about calm, relaxing items and installations that will give us all a better life experience.  After all life is about experience rather than what we may just buy!

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