A century of design. A hundred years from the birth of Sottsass

Ettore Sottsass was born on September 14th 1917 and lived to become one of the most versatile professionals of all time, embracing architecture, drawing, design, photography, painting, objects, furniture, sculpture, glass, ceramics, publishing and written works.

There are numerous events, exhibitions and re-editions which celebrate the centenary of the Master's birth, from ‘There is a Planet’, the monographic exhibition curated by his wife Barbara Radice (at theMilan Triennale until March 11th), to an exhibition at the University of Parma's Communication study centre and archive, another at theVitra Design Museum in Germany, and in New York at the Met Breuer in the  Metropolitan Museum. We have chosen to focus on “Object” at the Chinese hall of the Stefano Tordiglione Design Studio (86 Jervois Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong), from December 4th – 9th 2017, on occasion of the Business of Design Week. A mini-exhibition which provides insight into numerous objects designed by the architect forAlessi, Kartell, Artemide and Gallery Novalis. Upon visiting the exhibition what strikes you is the profound impact Sottsass had upon contemporary design. The series 5070 Alessi, small tableware architecture for oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, Nuovo Milano Alessi cutlery, characterised by soft and rounded forms (winners of the XV Compasso d'Oro 1989), the Calimaco and Pausania lamps by Artemide are just some examples of projects which exude the strong bond between beauty and functionality. There are numerous Memphis – Novalis Art Design pieces. Ettore Sottsass actually founded the Italian design and architecture collective Memphis, which was active between 1981 and 1987. This part of the exhibition speaks of a new approach to design, with the use of unusual forms, daring colours, graphic patterns and cheap materials, such as plastic.