When do we reach the stage or time to give up our playfulness? Adult life seems to be way too serious to do it 100% and all the time. The super-connectedness, the busyness at work, with family, friends, and everything else just doesn’t leave a lot of time to play.
However, people strive for this childlike curiosity, a distraction from the troubled times we live in, and experimental and inspirational experiences.
At the Salone del Mobile and Fuorisalone 2019, a few exhibitors showed that they listened and took the yearning of adults to heart by applying playfulness to form, material, colors, interactions with products, without losing their functionality.
Especially after a hard day in the outside world, it is wonderful to return to one’s home where an atmosphere welcomes you with an attitude of playfulness that lets the mind and spirit take users to a new and unexpected place.
Like the children’s learning environment, a carnivalesque application of color with blues, oranges, and yellows – similar to the lightscape at David Trubridge – or the adult swings and playscapes by Karimoku, it allows homeowners to temporarily escape into the imaginary world.
At the Milan Design Week, a few brands showed that playfulness has a legitimate place in interior design. Lavazza in collaboration with Gufram, not only had an interesting and surprising installation at the vaults under the Milan train station, but they also showed some of the fun furniture pieces from Gufram – the lips.
The not-so-serious approach to design – it doesn’t always have to be minimalist or brutalist – allows for blurring the boundaries between design and art. Marc Ange’s design from last year at several design shows showed a strong interest to integrate childhood wonder into interiors.
If playfulness is only going to be a temporary interaction, maybe a weekend – or longer – escape to a hotel that is irreverently designed with playfulness in mind, is the answer. The Imperial hotel in Sydney and the colorful, pattern-rich Salt resort in Mauritius are certainly great starting points to explore the narrative of the playfulness trend.