Enzo Mari (1932 -2020) Italian modernist, industrial designer

Enzo Mari featured image
Enzo Mari featured image

Enzo Mari (1932 – 2020) was an Italian modernist and furniture designer who lived from 1932 to 2020.

Education

Mari was born in Novara, Italy, and from 1952 to 1956, he attended the Brera Academy in Milan, Italy.

Biography

In 1956, he became interested in design, particularly books and children’s games. In 1957, he began working for Danese, for whom some of his designs and ideas for games and puzzles, including the 1957 wooden child’s puzzle, were realised.

Danese created his first plastic experimental objects in 1959, including the 1962 cylindrical umbrella stand in P.V.C. and the 1969 reversible Vase 3087 in A.B.S. plastic. The majority of his Danese designs were in plastics and intended for the table. In 1963, he became a member of the Nuove Tendenze movement.

Between 1963 and 1966, he taught design methodology and graphics at Milan’s Scuola Umanitaria. In 1970, he taught at Rome’s Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia. In 1972, he studied at the Universita di Parma’s Instituto di Storia dell’Arte, the Accademia di Belle Arti in Carrara, and the Politecnico di Milano’s Facolta di Architettura.

He began working with Elio Mari in 1965. In 1970, Enzo Mari’s design and research theories were published in his book Funzione della ricerca estetica.

Works

  • 3089 A.B.C. Graduating Table Bowls 1969
  • He collaborated with Elio Mari on the 1972 bookcase produced by Fabina; 
  • the 1974 grid-pattern Quaderna table and 
  • the 1979 Delfina chair produced by Driade; 
  • the 1973 Day-Night; 
  • the 1979 Elementare wall tiles by Gabbianelli; and 
  • the 1985 Tonietta chair produced by Zanotta. 
  • Anonima Castelli, Artemide, Driade, Editore Boringhieri, Gabbianelli, Gavina-Knoll, ICF, De Padova, La Rinascente-Upim, Olivetti, Simon International, and Le Creuset were among his clients. 

He was the president of ADI from 1976 to 1979. (Associazione per il Disegno Industriale).

Exhibitions

  • Instead of creating an environment for the 1972 exhibition ‘Italy: The New Domestic Landscape’ at the New York Museum of Modern Art, he provided an ‘anti-design statement. 
  • Premio Compasso d’Oro in 1967 for his design research, 
  • 1979 for his Delfina chair by Driade, and 1987 for his Delfina chair by Driade. 
  • His work was featured in the 1972 exhibition ‘Design a Plastické Hmoty’ at the Uméleckoprumyslové Muzeum in Prague, 
  • the 1983—84 exhibition ‘Design Since 1945 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and 
  • the 1991 exhibition ‘Mobili Italiani 1961—1991: Le Varie Eta dei linguaggi’ in Milan.

Sources

Byars, M., & Riley, T. (2004). The Design Encyclopedia. Laurence King Publishing.

McDermott, C. (1999). Modern design: classics of our time. Carlton Books.

Advertisements

Design Books – Amazon

* This website may contain affiliate links, and I may earn a small commission when you click on links at no additional cost.  As an Amazon and Sovrn affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

More Italian Designers

  • Enzo Mari (1932 -2020) Italian modernist, industrial designer

    Enzo Mari (1932 -2020) Italian modernist, industrial designer

    Graduating Table Bowls In 1956, he became interested in design, particularly books and children’s games. In 1957, he began working for Danese, for whom some of his designs and ideas for games and puzzles, including the 1957 wooden child’s puzzle, were realised.Read More →

  • Vico Magistretti (1920 – 2006) Italian architect/designer

    Vico Magistretti (1920 – 2006) Italian architect/designer

    In 1920 Vico Magistretti was born in Milan, Italy. First recognition of his work came in 1948, at the 8th Triennale. He started designing for Cassina in 1960, and from that date on his signature is to be found on many products.Read More →

  • Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007) Father of Anti-Design

    Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007) Father of Anti-Design

    Although trained and active as an architect, Sottsass secured a permanent place in pop culture with his designs of everyday items. From 1957, he was a consultant designer at Olivetti, where he designed computers, adding machines, typewriters, and systems furniture. Read More →

  • Gianni Pasini (b.1937) Italian Designer – Electronic Machinery

    Gianni Pasini (b.1937) Italian Designer – Electronic Machinery

    Gianni Pasini was born in 1937 in Venice and professionally active in Milan. Some of his clients were Olivetti, Fabbrica Italiana, Magneti Marelli, and Crin hospital. He worked with Sandro Pasqui in a design studio from 1974 onwards.Read More →

  • Harry Bertoia (1915 – 1978) Italian sculptor, furniture designer

    Harry Bertoia (1915 – 1978) Italian sculptor, furniture designer

    Harry Bertoia was a sculptor, printmaker, jeweller, and furniture designer. He was born in San Lorenzo, Udine, and worked in the United States professionally. During World War Two he worked with Ray and Charles Eames on moulded-plywood technology. He worked primarily as a sculptor from the mid-1950s onwards. His sculpture was prominently featured in many of Eero Saarinen’s buildings.Read More →

  • Antonia Astori (b.1940) Italian designer co-founded Driade

    Antonia Astori (b.1940) Italian designer co-founded Driade

    Antonia Astori co-founded Driade with her brother Enrico and Adelaide Acerbi in 1968. She was able to create a unique network of furniture designers, galleries, and shops.Read More →

  • Memphis Group – it has little to do with Tennessee

    Memphis Group – it has little to do with Tennessee

    Memphis was a movement in interior design introduced at the annual Milan Furniture Fair in 1981. It consisted of a group led by Memphis guru Ettore Sottass of avant-garde Italian designers. With outrageous interpretations of traditional furnishings and accessories, Memphis shocked the traditionally quiet industry.Read More →

  • Gio Ponti (1891-1979) Italian designer, writer and teacher

    Gio Ponti (1891-1979) Italian designer, writer and teacher

    Gio Ponti was an influential writer, teacher, and practising architect who was one of the most influential figures in twentieth-century Italian design. In a long and illustrious career, he worked in a wide variety of design fields, from interiors to furniture and product design, understanding the value of craft traditions alongside creating a new aesthetic.Read More →

  • Zanussi Italian manufacturer and design firm

    Zanussi Italian manufacturer and design firm

    Antonio Zanussi established the household appliance firm in Pordenone in 1916. It was initially a workshop for repairing stoves. His sons and Guido and Lino took over on his death in 1946, and under them, the firm began its rise. Read More →

  • Archizoom avant-garde Italian design studio

    Archizoom avant-garde Italian design studio

    Four architects—Andrea Branzi, Gilberto Corretti, Paolo Deganello, Massimo Morozzi—and two designers—Dario Bartolini and Lucia Bartolini—founded Archizoom this Italian avant-garde design studio in 1966 in Florence, Italy. They focused on exhibition installations and architecture and designing interiors and goods as part of the Italian Anti-Design or Radical Design movement.Read More →

  • Matteo Thun (b.1952) Italian ceramicist and designer

    Matteo Thun (b.1952) Italian ceramicist and designer

    We reject design as an issue of taste! We follow a different strategy: Simplicity. We always search for the iconic form and create things that people can understand intuitively. We, Read More →

  • George Sowden – British/Italian Designer

    George Sowden – British/Italian Designer

    George James Sowden is a British designer. He was born in Leeds and active Italy. Between 1960-64 and 1966-68, he studied architecture, Gloucester College of Arts. Read More →

  • Alessandro Mendini (b.1931) Italy’s famous design thinker

    Alessandro Mendini (b.1931) Italy’s famous design thinker

    Alessandro Mendini (b.1931) played an important part in the development of Italian, Postmodern, and Radical design. He was co-founder of Studio Alchymia (with Alessandro and Adriana Guernero) in 1976. He was awarded several international prizes, including the Compasso d’Oro in 1979, 1981, and 2014. In 2011, he was awarded with the title Doctor Honoris Causa of the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Cachan.Read More →

  • The Olivetti Lettera 22 Typewriter – Lightweight and Compact

    The Olivetti Lettera 22 Typewriter – Lightweight and Compact

    Olivetti’s 1950 Olivetti 22 typewriter became the standard for portable typewriters. Marcello Nizzoli’s Typewriter won the Compasso d’Oro at the 10th Triennale in Rome in 1951. Ettore Sottsass would further develop this design in the 1964 Teckne 3.Read More →

  • Proust Armchair (1978) –  Luxury Comes in All Forms

    Proust Armchair (1978) – Luxury Comes in All Forms

    The Studio Alchimia in Milan was founded in 1976 and exhibited its first collection in 1979. Alessandro Mendini’s Proust armchair is one of the most unusual pieces from the Bau.Haus collection. It was made in a small number and individually painted to express the collective’s unease with mass production.Read More →

  • Halogen bulbs revolutionised home lighting.

    Halogen bulbs revolutionised home lighting.

    The halogen bulb is the first new invention to completely transform the lighting industry since Thomas Alva Edison succeeded in creating the incandescent lamp by successfully making a loop of carbonized cotton thread glow in a vacuum for 40 hours.Read More →

  • Marco Zotta (b.1945) Italian industrial designer

    Marco Zotta (b.1945) Italian industrial designer

    He designed furniture and furnishings, lighting for clients including Fargas, Le Cose, Studio Grando, Stilnovo and Evoluzione. He became a member of ADI (Associazione per il Disegno Industriale).Read More →

  • Marcello Piacentini (1881 – 1961) Italy’s Fascist Architect

    Marcello Piacentini (1881 – 1961) Italy’s Fascist Architect

    Marcello Piacentini (1881–1961) was an Italian urban theorist and one of the leading proponents of Italian Fascist architecture.Read More →

  • Pietro Chiesa (1892 – 1948) 🇮🇹 Italian furniture and glassware

    Pietro Chiesa (1892 – 1948) 🇮🇹 Italian furniture and glassware

    He was an apprentice in the studio of Giovan Battista Gianotti, painter, furniture designer, and decorator; in 1921, opened Bot- tega di Pietro Chiesa, Milan; in 1927, (with Gio Ponti, Michele Marelli, Tomaso Buzzi, Emilio Lancia, and Paolo Venini) founded Il Labirinto, which produced high-quality glassware. Read More →

  • Livio Castiglioni (1911 – 1979)  🇮🇹 Italian industrial designer

    Livio Castiglioni (1911 – 1979) 🇮🇹 Italian industrial designer

    In 1938, Castiglioni and his brother Pier Giacomo Castiglioni set up a studio with Luigi Caccia Dominioni, which closed in 1940. Read More →

You may also be interested in

Antonia Astori (1940 – ) Italian designer – Encyclopedia of Design

Embed from Getty Images Antonia Astori is an Italian fashion designer who co-founded Driade with her brother Enrico and Adelaide Acerbi in 1968. She worked as a project coordinator and designed furniture. She was able to create a unique network of furniture designers, galleries, and shops.

Patrizia Ranzo Italian architect and designer – Encyclopedia of Design

Patrizia Ranzo is an Italian architect and designer. She was born and active in Naples. She studied architecture in Naples to 1981. Her work in design began in 1975; from 1983, she collaborated on projects with the architecture department at the University of Naples.

More design articles

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.