Porsche's signature 1960s houndstooth pattern informs "inhabitable" net installation


Design collective Numen/For Use has created a netted installation for automobile brand Porsche’s The Art of Dreams exhibition at Milan design week, which also features a Vitra furniture collection.

The black and white houndstooth of the Porsche “pepita” pattern informed themes of geometry, symmetry, rhythm and repetition that guided the car brand’s installation.

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The installation filled the courtyard of the Palazzo Clerici in Milan

Design collective Numen/For Use created an enormous black and white netted installation that filled the courtyards of the Palazzo Clerici in the northern Italian city.

“Our idea of a dream is an inhabitable utopia,” said Numen/For Use. “For us, dreaming is a process of self-discovery in which we confront the new and the unknown. The monochrome diagonals within the Pepita pattern suggest a cloud of excited starlings fleeing the binary black and white matrix.”

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Numen/For Use said the installation was informed by a murmuration of starlings

The pepita pattern is made up of small squares connected by diagonal stripes, known as houndstooth or sometimes dog tooth.

Porsche’s pepita pattern debuted in 1948 in the 356 C, 911 Porsche. A bright red original 356 model was exhibited on a plinth at The Art of Dreams.

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Dancers navigated the fine but strong webbing of the installation

The huge lightweight construction by Numen/For Use was made of delicate cells and contrasting single-colour nets.

Visitors were invited to “climb inside and investigate the suspended landscape”.

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Dancers were choreographed by siblings Imre and Marne van Opstal

Intended as an interactive, climbable installation – titled Lines of Flight – the structure was animated by dancers at the launch event on 16 April, with choreography by Imre and Marne van Opstal and costumes by Alessandro Vigilante.

The Art of Dreams was also the launch event for a limited-edition furniture collection by Vitra for Porsche, which features three chairs upholstered in the pepita pattern.

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Vitra have collaborated on a re-edition of the Eames Plastic Side Chair

The Eames Plastic Side Chair, first designed by Charles and Ray Eames in 1950, has been re-editioned with full upholstery in the Porsche pepita pattern.

The collection also includes re-editions of two designs by Italian architect Antonio Citterio: his 2013 Petit Repos chair and the 2010 ID Trim L.

“Together with Vitra, we are bringing design dreams back to life because the iconic Pepita pattern is more than just a pattern,” said Porsche’s Ragnar Schulte.

“It is cultural heritage.”

Numen/For Use
The geometric installation reconfigured its shapes and textures as the visitor moved around it

A global initiative from Porsche, The Art of Dreams – a series of interactive art installations in various major cities – aims to foster creative collaborations that inspire dreaming.

Other installations on show at this year’s Milan design week include a sculptural interpretation of a boat made of stainless steel by Nfemi Marcus-Bello and a patterned stone-and-clay-floor showcased by fashion house Hermès.

Porsche – The Art of Dreams takes place from 16 to 21 April 2024 at Palazzo Clerici, Via Clerici 5, 20121 Milan, Italy. See our Milan design week 2024 guide on Dezeen Events Guide for information about the many other exhibitions, installations and talks taking place throughout the week.





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