HomeCreatorsEttore Sottsass

Ettore Sottsass

Ettore Sottsass Jr. (Italy, 1917-2007)

An architect, industrial designer, philosopher and provocateur, Ettore Sottsass led a revolution in the aesthetics and technology of modern design in the late 20th century.

     Sottsass was the oldest member of the Memphis Group — a design collective, formed in Milan in 1980, whose irreverent, spirited members included Alessandro Mendini, Michele de Lucchi, Michael Graves, and Shiro Kuramata. All had grown disillusioned by the staid, black-and-brown “corporatized” modernism that had become endemic in the 1970s. Memphis (the name stemmed from the title of a Bob Dylan song) countered with bold, brash, colorful, yet quirkily minimal designs for furniture, glassware, ceramics and metalwork. They mocked high-status by building furniture with inexpensive materials such as plastic laminates, decorated to resemble exotic finishes such as animal skins. Their work was both functional and — as intended — shocking.

     Sottsass's most-recognized designs appeared in the first Memphis collection, issued in 1981— notably the multihued, angular “Carlton” room divider and “Casablanca” bookcase. As pieces on these pages demonstrate, however, Sottsass is at his most imaginative and expressive in smaller, secondary furnishings such as lamps and chandeliers, and in table pieces and glassware that have playful and sculptural qualities.

     It was as an artist that Ettore Sottsass was celebrated in his life, in exhibitions at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, in 2006, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art a year later. Even then Sottsass’s work prompted critical debate. And for a man whose greatest pleasure was in astonishing, delighting and ruffling feathers, perhaps there was no greater accolade. That the work remains so revolutionary and bold — that it breaks with convention so sharply it will never be considered mainstream — is a testament to his genius.

Tartar Sideboard

Tartar Sideboard

By Ettore Sottsass
Tartar Sideboard
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Sideboards
Wood, Hardwood
The Tartar sideboard by Ettore Sottsass for MEMPHIS (1985) is remarkable in several ways. Sottsass once concurred that this iconoclastic piece was an avid attempt to create a Sottsas...
Ashoka Table Lamp

Ashoka Table Lamp

By Ettore Sottsass
Ashoka Table Lamp
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Table Lamps
Metal
The Ashoka table lamp is an early Ettore Sottsass lighting masterwork for the introductory 1981 MEMPHIS collection as iconoclastic a light/sculpture as you'll find anywhere!! With v...
Mimosa End Table

Mimosa End Table

By Ettore Sottsass
Mimosa End Table
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Side Tables
Laminate
A multi-use, highly-functional end table by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis (1984). The top possesses a small inserted piece of tempered glass, otherwise leaving the piece to visually re...
King Floor Lamp

King Floor Lamp

By Ettore Sottsass
King Floor Lamp
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Floor Lamps
Metal
The King lamp a very rare floor lamp (torchère) design by Ettore Sottsass for MEMPHIS (1983). Less than 30 were ever produced. It is fabricated from lacquered metal w/ a glass diffus...
Bay Table Lamp

Bay Table Lamp

By Ettore Sottsass
Bay Table Lamp
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Table Lamps
Crystal, Plexiglass
The Bay table lamp is a breathtaking masterpiece by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis (1983). Fabricated from tiers of colored perspex plastic & colored and whitened crystal glass, this wo...
Ivory Pedestal and Side Table
Ivory Pedestal and Side Table
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Pedestals
Hardwood
The ivory pedestal is (in my mind) the accompaniment to Sottsass' TARTAR Cubist-like sideboard --- a visual attempt to show each elevation/plain as though it were 3-D rather than a f...
Cream End Table

Cream End Table

By Ettore Sottsass
Cream End Table
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Side Tables
Laminate
The Cream end table by Ettore Sottsass for MEMPHIS (1984) is a rare example of the designer's play/riff on minimalism of course he just can't help himself and adjoins it with softene...
"Park Lane" Coffee Table by Ettore Sottsass
"Park Lane" Coffee Table by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Plastic, Fiberglass, Marble
A magnificent example of the "high/low" material concept that consumed Ettore Sottsass and the other Memphis designers in the early years of the collective. In this case --- beaut...
Pair of Italian Vintage Murano Glass Table Lamps
Pair of Italian Vintage Murano Glass Table Lamps
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Brass, Murano Glass
Pair of Italian Vintage Murano glass table lamps, in the style of Ettore Sottsass. Price listed is for the pair, can only be purchased as a pair. Single light socket each, wired for ...
"Diva" Wall Mirror by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Wall Mirrors
Mirror, Laminate
No one but Ettore Sottsass could've designed such a sexy mirror -- his deep love of women, their psyches, their erotic natures, their beauty. Quasi-deco in manner, yet embellished...
Ettore Sottsass, Italian Marble Pedestal, Stand...
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Post-Modern Pedestals
Marble
Ettore Sottsass, Italian Marble Pedestal, Stand No. 6 The white and gray stripes are perhaps an homage to the Sienna Cathedral. A remarkable work. The alternating horizontal bands o...
Carlton Miniature / 1:4 Scale by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
1990s Italian Post-Modern Collectibles and Curiosities
Laminate, Wood
Designed by Ettore Sottsass himself after his iconic full-scale object, the Carlton cabinet. Perfect reproduction of the Carlton bookcase. The vivid colors and seemingly random in...
"Diva" Wall Mirror by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Wall Mirrors
Mirror, Laminate
No one but Ettore Sottsass could've designed such a sexy mirror -- his deep love of women, their psyches, their erotic natures, their beauty. Quasi-deco in manner, yet embellished...

Mimosa End Table

By Ettore Sottsass
Mimosa End Table
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Side Tables
Glass, Laminate
Mimosa end table by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis srl (1984) A small end table in plastic laminates (different colors) with glass inset top / a perfect example of Sottsass's Masterl...
Pair of SIV Murano White Glass Domed Table Lamp...
Ettore Sottsass, Verti Murano
Vintage 1970s Italian Modern Table Lamps
Murano Glass
Pair of SIV Murano Società Italiana Vetro Translucent White Cased Glass Table Lamps, attributed to Ettore Sottsass. Featuring domes enhanced with circular translucent Amber, Orange ...
Pair of Lamps Pyramidal Coral Veneer, Italy, 1980s
Ettore Sottsass, Shiro Kuramata, Memphis Group
Vintage 1980s Italian Table Lamps
Coral
Pair of pyramidal table or bedside lamps in wood real red coral veneer. In the style of Sottsass, Memphis, Mendini, Michele De Lucchi, Matteo Thun, Marco Zanini, Aldo Cibic, Andrea B...
Ice Bucket "Mela" by Ettore Sottsass for Rinnov...
Ettore Sottsass, Rinnovel
Vintage 1950s Italian Modern Wine Coolers
Aluminum
"Mela" apple ice blu bucket designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1953 for Rinnovel. Sottsass wasn't originally Italian, he was born on 1917 in Innsbruck, (Austria), but grew up in Milan, ...
1980s Pop Art Memphis Style Upholstered Bench
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century American Modern Benches
Linen, Wood
1980s Pop Art, Memphis-style bench upholstered in amazing linen fabric. In good condition with light wear to edges. Top cushion comes off and can be reversed, bench has small ball ca...

Shiva Flower Vase

By Ettore Sottsass
Shiva Flower Vase
Ettore Sottsass
21st Century and Contemporary Spanish Modern Vases
Ceramic
Pink glazed ceramic vase.
Venini Goburam Glass Vase in Midnight Blue and ...
Venini, Ettore Sottsass
21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Vases
Art Glass
Venini geometric glass vase with angular body in midnight blue and red designed by Ettore Sottsass in 2001. Perfect for indoor home decor as container or strong statement piece for a...
Venini Oman Geometric Triangular in Multi-Color...
Venini, Ettore Sottsass
21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Vases
Art Glass
Venini glass vase with geometric, circular shaped body and triangular neck and base. Designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1994. Featured in red, grey and aquamarine colored glass. Perfect ...
Pedestal Table in Carrara Marble Table by Ettor...
Ettore Sottsass
1990s Italian Post-Modern Gueridon
Carrara Marble
Pedestal table in Carrara marble table by Ettore Sottsass.
Carlton Bookcase Roomdivider by Ettore Sottsass...
Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Late 20th Century Italian Post-Modern Bookcases
Wood
Carlton room divider, designed in 1981 by Ettore Sottsass, in wood and plastic laminate. The vivid colors and seemingly random interplay of solids and voids suggest avant-garde paint...
Midcentury Post Modern Italian Style Dining Cha...
Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group, Design Institute America
Vintage 1980s American Post-Modern Dining Room Chairs
Steel, Fabric, Lacquer
A super modern complete set of Postmodern dining chairs from the late 1980s. These were produced by the Design Institute of America (DIA) and in the style of Ettore Sottsass. They fe...
Pair of Italian Vintage Murano Glass Table Lamp...
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Brass, Murano Glass
Pair of Italian vintage table lamps with black, clear, and red Murano glass, in the style of Ettore Sottsass. / Made in Italy in the 1980's 1 light / max 40W each Diameter: 8 inches ...
Ganga Ceramic and Glass Vase by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Early 2000s Vases
Metal
Ganga is part of Sottsass’s 2003 collection for Italian editors Short Stories. Inspired by ancient Aztec ceramics and exemplary of Sottsass’s signature style, this sculptural object ...
Raymor Iridescent Bitossi Black Geometric Vase
Bitossi, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Vases
Ceramic
Multi-opening Italian iridescent black ceramic vase in the manner of Ettore Sottsass. Produced by Bitossi for Raymor.
Ettore Sottsass Bitossi Ceramic Vase Pink Matte...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vases
Ceramic
Ettore Sottsass Bitossi ceramic vase pink and matte black signed, Italy, 1950s. An early example of Ettore Sottsass' work for Bitossi. The volcanic glaze is composed of there colors...
Italian Memphis Floor Lamp, 1980s
Ettore Sottsass, Peter Shire
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Floor Lamps
Metal
A very nice Italian Memphis floor lamp in lacquered metal, 1980s. Attributed to Peter Shire.
Malabar Sideboard Designed by Ettore Sottsass f...
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Sideboards
Metal
The piece consists of six shelves with a one-door cupboard decorated in plastic laminate with a geometric pattern. Its form is made up of both straight and curved lines punctuated by...
Abstract Industrial Found Object Metal Table Sc...
Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Vintage 1980s American Post-Modern Abstract Sculptures
Steel, Glass, Paint
A great Industrial material sculpture including a huge crescent wrench among other various mechanical parts. Extremely heavy and well made. Made by a local Philadelphia artist, unsig...
Ettore Sottsass Umbrella Holder for Poltronova,...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Umbrella Stands
Wood
Ettore Sottsass umbrella holder for Poltronova, circa 1960, Italy. Light grey painted wood. Dimensions: 56 cm H, 25 cm W, 25 cm D. Good original vintage condition, wear consistent wi...
Ettore Sottsass Moonlight Floor Lamp, Italy, 1970
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1970s Italian Mid-Century Modern Floor Lamps
Steel
Rare Moonlight floor lamp, designed by Ettore Sottsass in Italy, circa 1970. This basic shaped floor lamp shines a very interesting and atmospheric light. Due to the vertical thin...
Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Murano Centerpiece ...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Glass
SOL centerpiece bowl designed by Ettore Sottsass. Signed as pictured.
1980s Memphis Style Huge Chandelier in the mann...
Venini, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Modern Chandeliers and Pendants
Steel, Glass
Superb thick master full glass work in the style of Venini for Ettore Sottsass. Shade is in a transluscent milky white tone fading into clear toward the edge. Striped black and w...
Murano Glass Table Lamp Dorane by Ettore Sottsa...
Stilnovo, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Steel, Murano Glass
This post-Modernist Italian model Dorane table lamp for Stilnovo features Ettore Sottsass’s clean lines and smooth finish. With an inherently sculptural aesthetic, this elegant lam...
Ettore Sottsass Table Mirror
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Table Mirrors
A rare mirror by Sottsass for Giotto.
"Palm Spring" Table or Desk by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Desks and Writing Tables
Laminate, Wood
A Sottsass tour-de-force multi-use table from the Memphis 1984 collection. Masterly usage of reddish briar on the table top, grayish-black briar on the legs and a curious implementat...
Murmansk Silver Fruit Bowl by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Centerpieces
Silver Plate
Murmansk silver fruit-bowl. Ettore Sottsass (Italian). Memphis Milano (Design: 1982; early production). Manufactured by Rossi & Arcandi, Vicenza for Memphis Milano, Italy. Silver...
Pair of Italian Vintage Murano Glass Table Lamps
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Brass, Murano Glass
Italian Vintage table lamps with blue, clear, black and red Murano glass sphere details and brass frame, in the style of Ettore Sottsass. / Made in Italy in the 1980's 1 light / max ...
Ettore Sottsass for Arredoluce Metal and Brass ...
Arredoluce, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Wall Lights and Sconces
Metal
Ettore Sottsass for Arredoluce, metal and brass, Italy, 1957. This early and stamped floor lamp is designed by Ettore Sottsass in black lacquered metal, brass and green lacquered ...
Set of Six Mandarin Dining Chairs by Ettore Sot...
Knoll, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s American Post-Modern Dining Room Chairs
Steel, Upholstery, Wood
Set of six dining chairs designed by Ettore Sottsass, the founder of the Memphis Group, Milan, Italy. These chairs are in very good completely original condition. Super sturdy constr...
Artemide Pausania LED Table Lamp in Green by Et...
Artemide, Ettore Sottsass
21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Table Lamps
An LED re-edition of the 1983 classic “Bankers Lamp” by Memphis-design maestro Ettore Sottsass features variable white light, a black resin body, green synthetic diffuser and aluminum.
Pair of Bar Stools Designed by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
1990s American Modern Chairs
Aluminum
Pair of Emeco bar stools designed by Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007), brushed aluminum with orange plastic seats.
Pair of Candlesticks by Ettore Sottsass for Swi...
Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Candlesticks
Brass
Signed pair of silver plated candlesticks by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell. Made in Italy. Price is for the pair.
Shiva Vase by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
20th Century Spanish Vases
Clay
A vase "Shiva" for Ediciones de diseno, Barcelona, 1973. Glazed clay, molded casting. Marked "b.D barcelona design".  
Gaetano Pesce Unique Handmade Silver Bracelet J...
Ettore Sottsass, Fish Design
Late 20th Century Italian Post-Modern Collectible Jewelry
Resin
A unique handmade silver bracelet designed by Gaetano Pesce Produced by Fish Design 1996 A stunning jewel! Shiny silver urethane resine Signed with stamp.
Ettore Sottsass "Enorme" Telephone
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern More Desk Accessories
Plastic
Designed by Ettore Sottsass, this original "Enorme" telephone has become more a sculpture than user object, he designed it in 1986 as an element of joy to what was only an utilitaria...
"Park Lane" Coffee Table by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Plastic, Fiberglass, Marble
A magnificent example of the "high/low" material concept that consumed Ettore Sottsass and the other Memphis designers in the early years of the collective. In this case...
Ettore Sottsass Shiva Limited Edition Black 76/100
Ettore Sottsass, BD Barcelona Design
Vintage 1970s Spanish Post-Modern Vases
Ceramic
Black Shiva ceramic vase designed by Ettore Sottsass, circa 1973, edited by BD in Barcelona. This piece has been produced as a limited edition with a total of only 100 units. Thi...
Pair of "Alba" Table Lamps by Ettore Sotsass fo...
Ettore Sottsass, Enel
Early 2000s Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Glass
Pair of Alba table lamps by Ettore Sotsass for energy company Enel. Designed in Italy, 2001. Black glass base with blue glass diffusers. Original cords with on/off switch. Each light...
Large Green and Red Centrepiece by Ettore Sottsass
Bitossi, Ettore Sottsass
2010s Italian Centerpieces
Ceramic
This elegant centrepiece in white clay features a base in dark grey supporting a conic body made of concentric steps that are finished in red on the outside and in vivid matte green ...
Ettore Sottsass Ceramic Table Lamp Signed Italy...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Ceramic
Ettore Sottsass Ceramic Table Lamp Signed Italy 1960s. An early ceramic pottery lamp with 3 tones of color and two distinct textures by the noted Italian architect/designer. Rewired ...
1950s Brown and White Ettore Sottsass Vase 'g'
Ettore Sottsass, Galleria il Sestante, Lucie Rie
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vases
Ceramic
Vase by Ettore Sottsass in brown and white, Italy, 1959. Nicely shaped ceramic vase designed by famous Italian Ettore Sottsass. He was an architect and designer of the late 20th c...
Limited Edition Tarzan Bowl by Ettore Sottsass ...
Ettore Sottsass, Cor Unum Ceramics
Vintage 1980s Dutch Post-Modern Decorative Bowls
Palisander
Limited edition Tarzan bowl designed by Ettore Sottsass for COR Unum Ceramics in the Netherlands. Very beautiful large ceramic bowl, made in a limited edition of 100 pieces. Signed a...
Italian Post Modernist Murano Art Glass Black C...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1970s Italian Mid-Century Modern Animal Sculptures
Art Glass
Large scale Italian post modernist Murano glass cat sculpture measuring 15.5" in height by 13" wide. In excellent vintage condition. Unsigned.
Bitossi Geometric Postmodern Ceramic Vase
Bitossi, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Post-Modern Vases
Ceramic
Unusual Italian yellow striped geometric ceramic vase in the manner of Ettore Sottsass. Produced by Bitossi for Raymor.
"Tahiti" Table Lamp by Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Table Lamps
Metal
The ultimate Sottsass table light!! Anthropomorphic (looks like a parrot)!! Swivels up and down. His Sottsass-designed "Bacteriae" laminate on the base! An appendage at the back in a...
Table Lamp "VALIGIA" Designed in 1977 by Ettore...
Stilnovo, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1980s Italian Mid-Century Modern Table Lamps
Metal
"Valigia" table lamp by Ettore Sottsass in red and black enamel manufactured by Stilnovo. Still has European wiring with original labels underneath. Wiring can be switched to Americ...
Black Glazed Ceramic Vase Memphis Milano Sottsa...
Ettore Sottsass, Luciano Florio Paccagnella
1990s Italian Post-Modern Vases
Ceramic
Memphis has been a cultural movement born in Milan around Ettore Sottsass and Sottsass Associati, that has combined young architects, artists and designers in 1990s. Luciano Florio P...
Still looking?
Get weekly alerts when there are new arrivals for Ettore Sottsass