“Italy has played a special role in applied arts and crafts for a very long time. While the arrival of mechanization made manual activities superfluous in the realm of mass produced items, the ancient Italian tradition of manufacturing ceramics, glass, wood, straw and fabrics was such that even in those sectors in which industrial production had the upper hand (for instance, furniture and furnishing in general), some of the prerogatives of the Italian character remained: namely imagination and the quest for good form”. (Gillo Dorfles, “The situation of industrial design in Italy”, in the catalogue: “Italienishes Mobel Design”, ICE 1980, pg. 12-21) In planning this exhibition, the utmost importance was given to the objects, whose visibility was a priority for the visitor. Communication was understood as the relationship between objects and media, with design being the basic tool for product planning. A very simple system of small, low tables and textile panels marked off the exhibition areas, where objects were arranged in chronological order. Very low-voltage halogen bulbs, used in the “Scintilla” system - which had been specially designed for these spaces - lit up the furniture and exhibition panels with dazzling light and without creating any disturbing shadows.
Cologne, Kolnishes Stadt-Museum
Italian Furniture 1950 - 80
w/ Studio De Pas, D’urbino, Lomazzi
Photo: P. Castiglioni