Back again in Milan this year is the ever-present Dror Benshetrit,who wowed us in years past with his Peacock Chair for Capellini (now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s permanent collection) and his QuaDror installation last year at Interni (which got him shortlisted for the Buckminster Fuller Prize in 2011). This year he is presenting a new line of luggage with Tumi that is as practical as it is edgy.
The collaboration, which has been three years in the making, has resulted in a collection of travel bags that transform in size as well as application. Dror says that he and Tumi "share the same creative DNA," manifested in a briefcase, travel satchel, and a patent-pending hardside suitcase. “They are tough as well as flexible,” he says, particularly the International Carry-on, with its hard angular shell, expands via a zipper-free “living hinge” that almost doubles its capacity.
“I was designing for myself,” says Benshetrit outside the exhibit hall where Tumi has created a multimedia display for the Milan launch conceived by British designer Jules Wright. “It’s about what we are carrying and how we carry ourselves,” he says, referencing the backpack, which is great for posture, “but you can’t walk into a board meeting with a backpack.” So it turns into a tote complete with laptop compartment. The collection is smart and sophisticated, and if it can keep up with Dror’s travel schedule, it must be durable.