about Vico Magistretti

VICO MAGISTRETTI (1920 – 2006)

Vico Magistretti was born in Milan on October 6, 1920. Magistretti studied architecture at the Polytechnic in Milan. From 1945 on, after his studies, he worked as an architect for several years. But to this day, Vico Magistretti caused more a stir with his designs than with his architecture.

Already in the late 1940s Vico Magistretti more and more developed into a pure designer. Magistretti’s designs and the materials he used are extremely varied: ceramics, furniture and lamps made of plastic, wood and metal. Magistretti is definitely hard to categorize – he was a master of metamorphosis. Nevertheless all Magistretti designs are determined by a certain elegance and technical refinement. He always kept in mind the functional nature of his works and therefore Vico Magistretti managed to create design objects that appear as stand alone space sculptures.

In the 1960s Magistretti began to favor plastics. At that time he produced, amongst other things, the one piece stackable plastic chair ”Selene“ (1969) and the chairs “Vicario” and “Gaudi” (1970).

Throughout his life Vico Magistretti produced designs for all renowned manufacturers: Artemide, Cassina, Heller, Flou, FontanaArte and of course for Oluce – the manufacturer who still produces one of the most distinctive design classics of Magistretti – the table lamp “Atollo”. With its mushroom-shaped shade made of metal, we can find Atollo wherever timeless designs are in demand today.

The designs of Vico Magistretti are displayed in various museums of the world; amongst others of course also at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

In the 1980s Magistretti began to work as a lecturer at the renowned Royal College of Art in London and in 1996 he was appointed Senior Follow there.

Ten years later, on September 19, 2006, Vico Magistretti died in his hometown Milan.