Ettore Sottsass was an Italian architect and designer who was a key figure in the development of the postmodern design movement. He is famous for his furniture designs, many of which were produced by the Memphis Group, a collective that he founded in 1981.
Sottsass’s furniture designs were known for their bold colors, geometric shapes, and a mix of different materials such as plastic laminate, glass, and steel. Some of his most famous designs include the “Carlton” bookcase, the “Superboxes” storage units, and the “Valentine” typewriter. He also designed several iconic office systems and furniture as well as domestic items like vases, ashtrays and more.
Ettore Sottsass was closely associated with the Olivetti company, for which he designed a number of iconic products. Olivetti was an Italian manufacturer of typewriters, computers and office equipment. Sottsass helped to design a number of their products in the 1960s and 1970s. He helped the company to develop a new style of office equipment that was more colorful and expressive than the typical gray and functional products.
The Synthesis office system is a modular office furniture system that was designed by Ettore Sottsass in the 1970s. The system was composed of different elements such as desks, cabinets, storage units, organizers. All the Synthesis products could be combined in different ways to create a customized workspace.
The Synthesis office system was a major breakthrough in the field of office design. It was widely adopted by businesses and organizations around the world.
Sottsass style is characterized by bold colors, geometric shapes, and a mix of different materials. He was able to bring a new approach in design. He often mixed elements of traditional and modern design, as well as high and low culture. Moreover, he used popular culture and art as an inspiration producing a new style that was playful and irreverent.