Auction 164A

Italian Design

20. September 2022 at 3:00 PM CEST


Around 270 designs will be up for auction on the first day of the auction series after the summer break. Among them are many interesting luminaire designs by renowned designers such as Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni, Joe Colombo, Cesare Casati and Emanuele Ponzio as well as Gio Ponti, Max Ingrand, Ettore Sottsass and Matteo Thun.

Among the classics is of course the floor lamp 'Arco', designed in 1962, (estimated price € 1,000 - 1,200) by the Castiglioni brothers. The aim was to design a mobile luminaire that would illuminate the dining table without having to be permanently installed on the ceiling. In order to ensure the distance to the table, Achille and Pier Giacomo chose a wide metal arch that is stuck in a foot made of marble, which forms a corresponding counterweight. Gio Ponti's pair of 'Finestra' lamps (estimate € 9,000 - 10,000 each), on the other hand, can be interpreted as illuminated pictures. Various models adorned the interior design of the Villa Planchart in Venezuela, which Gio Ponti built in the 1950s for the couple Anala and Armando Planchart and furnished with his own designs.

Among the lesser known but no less important designers is Antonio Pio Macchi Cassia (born Milan, 1937), who is represented in the auction with the pair of lamps '541'. Macchi Cassia studied engineering in Friburg (Ch) and worked as a graphic designer for the department store chain 'La Rinascente' in Milan before he became involved with plastics and epoxy resins and worked in this field full-time as an engineer for Hoechst and Siaf. From 1968 to 1993, he was a consultant for Olivetti - his lighting design for Arteluce also dates from the beginning of this period. The two lamps in the Space Age look are made of two plastic spheres hanging together and are priced at € 900 - 1,200. Filippo Panseca designed the table lamp '4043', a sphere made of acrylic glass with an integrated mirror surface. The multimedia artist, who most recently released a large light project 'Artificial Bionic Moon' at Expo 2020 in Dubai, became known at the end of the 1960s with kinetic spatial installations and objects made of acrylic glass.

Bidding wars are also to be expected over furniture: Ettorre Sottsas is represented with his magnificent room divider 'Casablanca', a typical Memphis masterpiece from 1981 (estimate € 9,000 - 10,000), which attracts attention with its interplay of coloured laminates and its dysfunctional elements projecting into the room. Another rare and sought-after piece is the carpet 'Tapileo' from 1970, which is estimated at € 12.000 - 15.000.

A special item in the offer is the dining room ensemble (estimate € 4,000 - 5,000) by Roberto Aloi. In addition to his many activities as a painter, sculptor and book author, Aloi also worked as a designer. His furniture designs often manifest his origins in painting. Colour gives the design of his dining room ensemble a great effect. The bright yellow contrasts excitingly with the constructivist chair designs and the architectural-looking construction of the table. To match, Roberto Aloi enriched the highboard in the middle section with an abstract painting in the style of the 1950s. The upholstery fabrics of the chairs match this.

Editions by Enzo Mari such as the 'Paros K' bowl from 1964 (estimated price € 900 - 1,200) and Gaetano Pesce's organic vase objects made of elastic synthetic resin (estimated price between € 300 and 500) round off the range of exciting and artistically sophisticated works.