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Farewell to Gaetano Pesce, designer of unbounded creativity

The visionary Gaetano Pesce has passed away at the age of 84, leaving behind a legacy of masterpieces that blur the boundaries between art and design, alongside previously unseen projects that were set to debut in the "Nice To See You - The Tired Man" exhibition at Pinacoteca Ambrosiana during Fuorisalone 2024.

Born in La Spezia in 1939, following his architecture and industrial design studies in Venice, Pesce lived between Padua, London, Helsinki, Paris, and the United States, ultimately settling in New York in 1983. Designer of unbounded creativity, Pesce advocated for authenticity and uniqueness, challenging the standardization of industial production. His relentless spirit of experitmentation solidified his status as a leader in Radical Design.

Gaetano Pesce
Serie Up Gaetano Pesce
B&B Italia UP4
B&B ItaliaUP4 Shop online
B&B Italia Up 2000 5_6
B&B ItaliaUp 2000 5_6Shop online
B&B Italia UP2
B&B ItaliaUP2 Shop online

With his sculptural works, he made a significant impact on the worlds of design and art, breathing life to some of the most relevant projects of the 1960s and 1970s. Foremost among these was the iconic Up series by B&B Italia, a manifesto of his visionary and revolutionary creativity which was inspired by the cultural and political milieu of his time. Introduced in 1969, the Up series consisted of seven different chair models with anthropomorphic shapes, taking center stage in any space with their innovative and expressive design.

More specifically, the UP5_6 stands out as a symbol of comfort and Italian design excellence, embodying Gaetano Pesce's vision about women "who, in his own words, have always unwittingly been their own jailer. This is why I decided to give this armchair the shape of a woman with a ball and chain, reflecting the traditional image of a prisoner".

Up5 B&B Italia

Women play a central role in the art of Gaetano Pesce, who deeply valued female creativity for its multidisciplinary approach and openness to diverse perspectives. His work is characterized by irony, unpredictability, and a nuanced sensibility, reflected in his use of color and tactile exploration of materials, diverging from the traditional masculine rigidity, geometric precision, and monochromatic rationality.

Feltri Cassina

Beyond his creative use of color, Gaetano Pesce's work consistently explores the dual functionality of objects. One notable project exemplifying this approach is Cassina's Feltri armchair, crafted using a technique patented by the brand itself. A symbol of the designer's avant-garde philosophy, it embodies the perfect blend of art and usefulness.

Cassina Feltri Nuvola Rossa
Cassina 114 Nuvola Rossa
Cassina114 Nuvola Rossa Shop online
Cassina 357 Feltri
Cassina357 Feltri Shop online
Cassina 520 Accordo
Cassina520 Accordo Shop online
357 Feltri Armchair
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The enveloping back of the seat subtly evokes regal seating, its majestic profile enhanced by a flexible material—wool felt—that allows to create multiple variations in shape. This versatility reflects life's dynamism while also imbuing the object with uniqueness, ensuring each version stands apart.

Cassina Feltri Traccia
Cassina Traccia
CassinaTraccia Shop online
Cassina 357 Feltri
Cassina357 Feltri Shop online
Risacca Screen
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356 Tramonto A New York Sofa
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After all, every one of Gaetano Pesce's creations, including those from recent years, is designed to be a unique piece, destined to stand the test of time through their bold expressiveness.

343 Tramonto a New York Screen
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