furnishing manufacturer (1949)
Kartell is an Italian company that produces furniture and design plastic objects, founded in 1949 in Noviglio, near Milan, by the will of Giulio Castelli, a graduate chemical engineer with the Nobel Prize for chemistry Giulio Natta.
His studies on plastics led him to an insight that will prove decisive for the fate of the company and the history of Italian design and world-Use Plastic In furnishing the home and replace traditional materials such as glass and wood with plastics.
In view of those years, the plastic is still seen as a substitute for the cheap but low quality, the finest materials. The brave challenge, transforming matter and especially the perception of users in an alternate and aesthetic value, is won thanks to technology and investment in the project design.
The particularity of Kartell is precisely the use of plastic in furniture in a completely original way and with the use of processing technologies traditionally used in other industrial sectors. Kartell's products are entirely made in Italy, although the largest sales market is the United States.
In the 60s, alongside the international affirmation of "Made in Italy", Kartell consolidated its identity developing research into plastics and the redefinition of forms and functions of products.
From then until now, the history is full of successes that have made a brand new face, more cheerful and carefree in home design. From the outset designers such as Anna Castelli Ferrieri and Gino Colombini lead in Italian homes - and more - everyday objects colored and well finished, giving new dignity to the anonymity of these types: containers, baskets, bowls and basins we alive with new life and are no longer elements of the domestic landscape to hide, but to exhibit.
In 1972, Kartell is invited to participate in the exhibition "Italy: The New Domestic Landscape" at the MoMA, Modern Art Museum in New York with three cutting-edge housing prototypes designed by Gae Aulenti, Ettore Sottsass and Marco Zanuso well as numerous pieces of production input in the museum's permanent collection.
In the '90s Kartell design relies on old and new international designers such as Philippe Starck, Patricia Urquiola, Piero Lissoni, Alberto Meda, Ron Arad, Antonio Citterio, Vico Magistretti, Maarten Van Severen, Ferruccio Laviani, Michele De Lucchi, Anna Castelli Ferrieri.
These partnerships allow the company to develop an image-edge style and technique, known throughout the world for over fifty years, and produce goods destined to become classics of design.
Kartell in 1999 founded the eponymous museum, which collects and exhibits over 1000 creations.
Kartell products have received numerous international awards, including the Compasso d'Oro (Golden Compass), the prize awarded annually by the ADI (Industrial Design Association), considered the most important award in the industry.
Among the most famous of Kartell are: Bookworm bookcase, designed by Ron Arad. The library, the result of careful technological research, is flexible and may take the form chosen without loss of strength and functionality.
Maui designed by Vico Magistretti, one of the world's best-selling sessions.
Eros armchair designed by Philippe Starck from embracing form, with the chrome frame with a central support, on foot or on wheels. The seat is made clear in several colors (crystal, yellow, light green, orange, cobalt blue) or opaque version (white, black, red).