Ettore Sottsass was a giant designer who had made monumental contributions to the story of modern design. He is mainly known for his iconic Valentine typewriter which he designed for Olivetti and for his distinctive architecture. He is even better known as the founder of the groundbreaking Memphis in the 80s, the group which was strikingly influential for its plastic laminated furniture in vivid colors, hailed by the press, and brought Sottsass the ultimate global fame. But his career started long before founding Memphis. Sottsass had put the foundation to his radical style, provocative ideas, and the rebellion against post-war modernism back in the 50s and 60s. It was during this early phase of his career that the Italian architect began designing objects that resonated notions 11 other than functionality, when engaging with Italy’s craft traditions. Now, in its newly renovated gallery in Chelsea, Friedman Benda presents a new exhibition “Ettore Sottsass 1955-1969,” that comes to unveil the power of this early chapter of his career.
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