For its centenary, Cassina remembers the prolific collaboration proposed by some of the most emblematic pieces of Italian design: the Maralunga sofa and the Nuvola Rossa bookstore.
For the centenary of the birth of Vico Magistretti, Cassina recalls the prolific collaboration proposed by some of the most emblematic pieces of Italian design: The Maralunga sofa and the Nuvola Rossa bookstore.
Milanese architect and designer Vico Magistretti created innovative products that, for several decades, never went out of style. That is because "simplicity is the most complicated thing in the world" His main objective has always been to create furniture that can defy time. In fact, he stated: "A good design should not have an expiration date, but should continue to repeat itself over a long period of time and remain relevant even after 100 years"
The successful partnership between Cassina and Magistretti dates back to the early 60s. When the Carimate chair was included in the catalog it became an instant success. At that time Cassina was animating designers with different visions. The idea was to launch industrial design in Italy, moving from craftsmanship to mass production. Thanks to a constant exchange, the professional and personal relationship between Vico Magistretti and Umberto and Cesare Cassina continued to be strengthened, with the talent and creativity of the teacher on the one hand, the combined experience and the superior quality of a pioneering company on the other.
Back in the 70s, Vico Magistretti was polishing his most renowned and highly acclaimed design - winner of a Compasso d'Oro award.
The story goes that Cesare Cassina hit a prototype of Maralunga with his closed fist. When he first saw it, the piece did not meet his expectations, much less his demand for extreme comfort. The blow and resulting damage to the back of the sofa, however, was exactly what Magistretti needed. A clumsy gesture revealed, in an instant, how to innovate the traditional sofa. At that time he could only comment: "All right. Brilliant! It seems perfect to me like this"
Maralunga immediately left its brand. The strengths of the product, its most outstanding characteristics, did not stop having an impact on the international brandet: its innovation, hidden in the mobile headrest that is based on a mechanism developed from a simple bicycle chain, its reassuring appearance and the extreme simplicity of its soft padding.
"With Maralunga"Said Vico Magistretti,"I set out to design an object that could represent a whole range of interior architecture with a familiar feel. A warm, comfortable and cozy place, where one can feel totally at ease. Two positions, two possible uses, two different ways to create your own personal space within a room."
At the end of that decade, another key piece appeared that would further enhance Vico's reputation: Nuvola Rossa, the revolutionary bookstore. Simplicity and essential shapes are the main characteristics of this 1977 piece. Designed as a folding shelf, according to Magistretti's modus operandi, it is about analyzing and reinterpreting the basic elements of any shelf and the sum of its parts: the structure and the shelves. The result is a light and modern piece of furniture whose “off” aspect houses a surprising mechanism.