I am just getting back from the amazing Milan Design Week where I had the chance to experience all the latest Ford Design innovations. From their Favilla light installation to all the 12 design objects inspired by the new GT.
With Moray Callum at the helm of the Ford Design team, the global network of design studios have been putting the pedal to the metal in designing consumer experiences that push the boundaries of what can be expected from an automotive company both on-the-road and off.
To Every Light a Voice
During the day, the sculpture is lit by a blue light that will create lines across the surface. Once the sun sets, the installation comes to life and a 90 second animation will be projected on the sculptor adding to the sculpted surface and revealing the form of the Ford GT.
In collaboration with Salone del Mobile, Ford examines the science of light through an innovative, interactive installation that highlights the way light moves, how it is seen by the eye, and how it allows people to discover new shapes. FAVILLA, which literally translates to spark in Italian, unfolds inside two large boxes – the first black, the second transparent.
First, visitors will step inside the black box where the walls are faceted and the light bounces. This experience challenges the viewer to consider the four characteristics of light’s movement – diffraction, reflection, retraction and rectilinear lines.
Peering at the second box, visitors will experience light as a creator of shape and form. And it is here, inside this transparent box, that Ford offers visitors an engaging product experience that showcases how Ford design shapes a unique consumer experience, taking visitors through an unexpected discovery process that perfectly reflects Ford’s philosophy that design is an emotional journey orchestrated around the customer.
Designers from Ford Motor Company created a space where light is used not only to sculpt an exterior shape, but to redefine the way people perceive an interior space. The representation surprises the audience by reversing the traditional discovery process that starts with the exterior of a vehicle and taking the audience on a new journey that begins with the interior.
The GT has inspired the design team to really go further – as far as Milan, Italy at the internationally renowned furniture and design fair, Salone del Mobile.
Why a furniture fair? Ford’s Design team knows a great-looking interior design of a vehicle can attract the eye, but if that design isn’t thought through to accommodate different customer needs, this can be a less satisfying experience.
Vehicle interiors have witnessed one of the biggest evolutions across the history of cars in recent years, not only has Ford introduced a great deal of useful new technology into vehicles like the GT, but the company is consistently adding better materials, improved design and increased features across the board. All of this leads to a focus on design languages that not only convey the right messages, but deliver on an enhanced user experience. With this in mind, Ford Design took to Milan debuting the following:
At Salone, Ford Design premiered some of their hottest designs to come out of the company’s global network of design studios – and surprisingly they’re not cars. The collection of 12 GT-inspired objects runs the gamut, inclusive of: a guitar, sailboat, side table, lounge chaise, armchair, speaker, two different light fixtures, a sculpture, foosball table, pillow, and a clock;
All selected from a welcome design challenge where the more than a 100 submissions had to meet all of the following three criteria:
• Is a Design Object, has a real thought behind it and is not just a styling exercise
• Portrays the philosophy used to design the interior of the Ford GT
• Can be delivered in the existing time frame and with an extremely efficient use of resources
Each of the 12 objects clearly embody the all-new Ford GT’s interior design philosophy, which is driven by three principles: clarity of intent, innovation and connection. These fundamentals are brought to life through design solutions that visually communicate fit for purpose, lean and lightweight, and perceived efficiency.
This year ushered in the development of the all-new GT at breakneck speeds, making it “the ‘fastest’ vehicle Ford has ever designed.” Unveiled in January, the vehicle is getting fast tracked from concept to production, with testing and development compressed into just 18 months.