From the world’s first beanbag chair to a sporty timber desk designed by a daredevil designer, Zanotta carries some of the best and most fascinating products Italian design has to offer.
29 September, 2017
Beanbags are easily one of the most beloved, versatile and recognisable types of chair in the history of design. But do you know who first successfully developed this anatomical chair for industrial production? Meet Zanotta.
Established in 1954, the furniture brand is one of the major players of modern Italian design. In fact, Zanotta’s illustrious history is inseparable from that of the country’s design industry. It was one of the pioneering brands that provided designers with a platform to experiment, create and push the boundary of Italian furniture design, ushering the industry into its golden age during the mid-1950s and ’60s. It was also one of the first brands that championed and participated in the first edition of the Salone del Mobile in 1961.
Zanotta has collaborated with some of the greatest Italian designers, including brothers Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni, Marco Zanuso, Joe Colombo and Ettore Sottsass, just to name a few. In addition to producing pieces designed by its ever-expanding roster of collaborators, over the decades the brand has also acquired the rights to manufacture some of the most iconic designs.
Today, there are over 200 Zanotta pieces being displayed as part of permanent collections in some of the world’s most prestigious museums. Some of them are now available in Singapore thanks to W. Atelier. You can find both Zanotta’s classic and contemporary iconic pieces in W. Atelier’s sunny and spacious new flagship showroom (read more about the showroom here).
Among them is Sacco, the aforementioned world’s-first beanbag chair. Designed by Cesare Paolini, Franco Teodoro and Piero Gatti in 1968, the anatomical chair remains one of the brand’s best-selling classics. Sacco is available in three sizes and myriad colours, as well as in limited editions in patterned and textured upholstery.
Designed by Ludovica Palomba, the sculptural Lama chaise longue provides a stylish place to lounge both indoors and out. The indoor version features a varnished steel frame and removable fabric or leather upholstery while the outdoor version features a painted steel frame with woven PVC and nylon thread in black or white.
Looking for conversation starters? Look no further than Carlo Mollino’s designs. Born in 1905, Mollino was one of the most fascinating figures in Italian design. The greater part of his oeuvre consisted of bespoke furniture pieces designed for Europe’s wealthiest, while the rest was a curious mixture of products ranging from polaroid photographs to cars and aeroplanes (which he test-drove and flew himself). These days, his original pieces fetch an incredibly handsome sum in prominent auction houses.
Zanotta has acquired the rights to produce Mollino’s Ardea chair and Cavour desk. A chair ahead of its time, the curvaceous Ardea chair looks just at home in a contemporary setting as it did when Mollino debuted it in 1944. Designed in 1949, the Cavour desk expresses Mollino’s penchant for speed. It features a sporty silhouette, timber drawers and a 12-millimetre thick glass plate top.
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