100 years of history and a legacy that will never be forgotten, Piero Fornasetti‘s legacy lives on, either on the multiple design creations that highly take inspiration from the famous designer. Piero Fornasetti was an extraordinary visionary and prolific designer, painter, sculptor, and engraver, creating approximately 13,000 objects and decorations throughout his life. His whimsical motifs—the sun, moon, and stars, animals, surrealist images—adorn furniture, interiors, scarves, and everyday objects like ashtrays, trash cans, and umbrella stands.
Barnaba Fornasetti (the son)
Fornasetti’s house in Milan
Throughout his son that keeps his father’s legacy alive, the home where Piero lived his entire life and that to this day, pays homage to the artist’s honorable world or last but not least, the design brand, Fornasetti‘s furniture design creations that still carry an unimaginable legacy. BarnabaFornasetti took over the company in 1988 after his father’s passing and continues Piero’s work today. Barnaba has curated more than 1,000 pieces, mostly from the Fornasetti archive in Milan.
My father was a prolific artist. You can see in the exhibition how many drawings he was able to do. But he was often able to use images that were already available—images from the past, from stories, from old books, old prints. The strongest example of this concept is are the plates, the collection called “Theme and Variations”. It is made with the same face, the graphic design of a face taken from an old magazine last century—the portrait of [opera singer] Lina Cavalieri. He did not choose this image because it was Lina Cavalieri, but because it was graphically perfect to create these plates, and he used this image more than 300 times. I continue to make variations of the plates, but not only in a two-dimensional way, I create three-dimensional objects too.
The Piero Fornasetti-inspired suite at Mandarin Oriental Milan. Celebrating the outstanding designer Piero Fornasetti, The Milano Suite of Mandarin Oriental consists in a living room, bedroom and guest bathroom and is furnished with numerous original Fornasetti pieces. Located on the second floor, the floor traditionally used by Italian nobility, the living room is adorned with the surrealist ‘Riflesso’ wallpaper mural and the ‘Ultime Notizie’ table in the dining area.
The dining area’s table, chairs, and floor tiles feature Fornasetti’s Ultime Notizie motif, the dishes are in the Architettura pattern, and the convex mirror is from the Litomatrice series; Barnaba designed the Fender Stratocaster guitar, and a 1930s painting by his father hangs on the wall.
In the early days of the atelier, Fornasetti’s eccentric style may have attracted a particular clientele, but now the company counts fans across the globe.
The pieces have a contemporary look, but they’re not trendy. I’m trying to take the brand forward by reinventing it. My father was a pioneer in this field, mixing iconography and nods to history. Even though he was an incredible artist in his own right, he incorporated other people’s images, often making those more recognizable than his own.
– Barnaba Fornasetti
100 years of history and a legacy that will never be forgotten, a bond between Piero Fornasetti and his family that together, created one of the most powerful and creative steps for modern design.
Fornasetti has drawn from pop culture for its latest collection offurniture design, accessories, glassware, and precious objects, intensifying the hypnotic power of geometric repetition with a focus on the red lip pattern. In an all-black and white modern design, the red lips give it a charismatic look, with a passion and vitality for design. All objects in this modern design collection are handcrafted using the same artisanal techniques as ever and decorated by the Milanese atelier’s painters.
The Fornasettimodern cabinets bring fun and extremely flamboyant design into the domestic space while playing with the history of architecture. An unusual yet sophisticated atmosphere is thus created by combining art and design. Face all over and colorful designs! A fun furniture collection is what makes interior design so much fun to play with, the sky’s your limit and your home should look as fun as you want it to be.
The 1950s table in Barnaba’s office was a collaboration between his father and Gio Ponti; the chairs and the Roubini rug are both Fornasetti designs.
It comes naturally to me. This has always been my life. I see furniture and decoration as a way of being and as a means of injecting joy into a world otherwise obsessed with minimalism.
What do you think about these luxury furniture designs by Fornasetti?