A wide shot of a ceramics studio, featuring students working with pottery wheels and other tools.

SAIC Design Students Bring Back 1866 with Whatnot 2016

Fifteen SAIC students in Architecture, Interior Architecture, and Designed Objects (AIADO) return to Milan for the ninth year to present a collection of designed objects, whatnot 2016, inspired by SAIC’s 150th Anniversary celebration, as the objects draw from ideas, objects, and historical references from 1866.

SAIC is one of a few American colleges that participated in the annual Milan Furniture Fair, and the collection was revealed and available for purchase during Milan Design Week April 12–17 at the Spazio Rossana Orlandi. Whatnot 2016 included objects such as, Crylus, a glass stylus that catches tears to moisten ink when writing, inspired by the mourning ceremonies of the Victorian era, Cora Pearl, feathered mirrors that offer protection and reflection, inspired by the risky, yet empowering, lifestyle of 19th-century prostitutes, and Jacks-Up, a stool inspired by the raising of the Briggs Hotel in 1866 Chicago.

The collection was created, designed, and produced by undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in AIADO’s yearlong Milan External Partnerships class, taught and curated by professors Helen Maria Nugent and Jim TerMeer.

Various art and design blogs, such as ChicagoInno, Core77, BlackBook, and Tikkurila-blogit, covered SAIC’s whatnot 2016 collection.