Nefertiti | January 2024

The Nefertiti writing desk is usually recalled as one of the first furnishings in the history of design made with decorative plastic laminate. Sottsass designed it in 1967 as part of the research for Abet Print started a few years earlier with the maquettes for the Superboxes. Poltronova produced the Nefertiti in 1968 and kept it in its catalog for about ten years, although very few examples were actually build and sold. Starting in 1969, Superstudio’s Misura laminates achieved greater commercial success through the Quaderna series for Zanotta, still in production. Today, observing these and other attempts to ‘neutralize’ design through the invention of a flat, continuous and isotropic surface, it is striking the highly symbolic and iconic character of the objects produced: almost the opposite of the designers’ intentions. This aspect is particularly evident if we browse the catalog that promoted them, ‘Elementi. L’invenzione della superficie neutra’ and the works by Archizoom, Ettore Sottsass, and Superstudio.
Starting from January 2024 Simone Begani will show some Abet Print plastic laminate furnishings from the 1960s. Alongside the Nefertiti and the different versions of the Quaderna, the gallery displays objects and lamps that testify the research on furnishing of those years, such as in the Yantra series and the lamps produced by Poltronova. In Florence the research on light was carried out in a particular way by Andrea Bellosi, a designer closely linked to the radical movements, but in many respects more distant and lateral. To retrace some episodes of his work, the gallery exhibits lamps and mirrors by Bellosi made between the 1970s and the early 2000s, all prototypes or made in small self-produced series, such as the better-known Arc-en-ciel from 1978.

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ETTORE SOTTSASS, Nefertiti, Poltronova 1968

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ETTORE SOTTSASS, Y10, Yantra di Terracotta, Poltronova 1969
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ETTORE SOTTSASS, Y31, Yantra di Terracotta, Poltronova 1969
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ETTORE SOTTSASS, Y28, Yantra di Terracotta, Poltronova 1969
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ETTORE SOTTSASS, Y14, Yantra di Terracotta, Poltronova 1969
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ETTORE SOTTSASS, YP1, Yantra di Terracotta, Poltronova 1969
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SUPERSTUDIO, Quaderna, Zanotta 1969
ANDREA BELLOSI, Push, 2011

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ANDREA BELLOSI, Arc-en-ciel, 1978

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ETTORE SOTTSASS, Asteroide, Poltronova 1968

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