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.

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Large Collection of 20th Century Typewriters Olivetti, Remington, Hermes etc

By Olivetti, Ettore Sottsass
Large Collection of 20th Century Typewriters Olive...
Olivetti, Ettore Sottsass
20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Desk Accessories
A stunning large collection of 15 different brand typewriters and two early calculators from Olivetti. The collection include some fine Swiss, German, Italian and British examples from ...
Olivetti "Valentine" Typewriter by Ettore Sottsass

By Olivetti, Ettore Sottsass
Olivetti "Valentine" Typewriter by Ettore Sottsass...
Olivetti, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Desk Accessories
Steel, Plastic
Famous portable typewriter by Sottsass for Olivetti, Italy from the 1960s. Totally functional with some wear to the case one with spanish keys. 3 pcs available
Ettore Sottsass Umbrella Stand for Rinovel, 1955

By Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass Umbrella Stand for Rinovel, 1955
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Racks and Stands
Aluminum, Plastic
Rare Ettore Sottsass umbrella stand for Rinovel, Italy, 1955. Quick shipping in the continental U.S. via FedEx, $175.
Teodora Chair by Ettore Sottsass, 1984, Vitra Editions

By Ettore Sottsass, Vitra
Teodora Chair by Ettore Sottsass, 1984, Vitra Edit...
Ettore Sottsass, Vitra
Vintage 1980s Italian Post-Modern Armchairs
Acrylic, Laminate
Ettore Sottsass designed the Teodora chair for Vitra Editions shortly after leaving the Memphis Group in 1985. Signed with decal manufacturer's label to underside: [Vitra 09.91]. p...
Pair of Floor Lamps By Sottsass

By Ettore Sottsass
Pair of Floor Lamps By Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1940s Italian Floor Lamps
Brass, Glass
Two pairs available. Designed by Ettore Sottsass for an hotel in Milano.
Ceiling Lamp "1906 Manifesto" by Ettore Sottsass, Stilnovo, Italy, 1970

By Stilnovo, Ettore Sottsass
Ceiling Lamp "1906 Manifesto" by Ettore Sottsass, ...
Stilnovo, Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1970s Italian Industrial Chandeliers and Pendants
Chrome
Ceiling lamp "1906 Manifesto" by Ettore Sottsass, Stilnovo, Italy, 1970.
"Juliette " Vase, 1994 by Ettore Sottsass for Sèvres

By Ettore Sottsass
"Juliette " Vase, 1994 by Ettore Sottsass for Sèv...
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century French Vases and Vessels
Porcelain
Juliette vase, 1994 by Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007) for Sèvres manufacture. White porcelain biscuit and red enameled porcelain. Signed, stamped by Sèvres, numbered 04. Rare piece from...
Vase by Ettore Sottsass, Societá Ceramica Toscana, Italy

By Ettore Sottsass, Societa Ceramica Italiana
Vase by Ettore Sottsass, Societá Ceramica Toscana...
Ettore Sottsass, Societa Ceramica Italiana
Vintage 1960s Italian Modern Vases and Vessels
Ceramic
Vase model "629" by Ettore Sottsass, Societá Ceramica Toscana, Italy Yantral series silver glaze
Ettore Sottsass Yellow Vase from the Yantra Series

By Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass Yellow Vase from the Yantra Series...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vases and Vessels
Ceramic
Ettore Sottsass Vase from the Yantra series, model Y33a, Edizioni Arte Design Italy, 1968, 1980, glazed ceramic. Signed "Sottsass" on underside in addition to the paper label.
Floor Lamp "Svincolo" by Ettore Sottsass, Studio Alchimia Milano, 1979

By Ettore Sottsass, Studio Alchimia
Floor Lamp "Svincolo" by Ettore Sottsass, Studio A...
Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group, Studio Alchimia
Vintage 1970s Italian Floor Lamps
Chrome, Wood
Floor Lamp "Svincolo" by Ettore Sottsass, Studio Alchimia Milano 1979 laminated wood, chromed metal, neon-light
Mirror Designed and Signed by Ettore Sottsass, 2007 Made in Italy
Mirror Designed and Signed by Ettore Sottsass, 200...
Ettore Sottsass
21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Wall Mirrors
Mirror
Dioniso four mirror of early production designed by Ettore Sottsass for Glas Italia in 2007 comprises orange, white, and black colored glass in geometric shapes that surround the centra...
Pair of Silver Plate & Brass Candlesticks by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell

By Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell
Pair of Silver Plate & Brass Candlesticks by Ettor...
Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell, Memphis Group
Late 20th Century Italian Candle Holders
Silver Plate, Brass
A thoroughly modern pair of candlesticks, designed by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell, in the signature asymmetrical Memphis style. Stamped on the underside of the bobeche with both nam...
Mirror Signed by "Ettore Sottsass Produced by Glas Italia" Italy 2007
Mirror Signed by "Ettore Sottsass Produced by Glas...
Ettore Sottsass
21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Wall Mirrors
Mirror
Dioniso 1 mirror of early production designed by Ettore Sottsass in 2007 for Glas Italia 2007, comprises white, orange, red, and yellow colored glass in geometric shapes that surround t...
Vase model 594 by Ettore Sottsass, Il Sestante Sottsass Italy, 1962
Vase model 594 by Ettore Sottsass, Il Sestante Sot...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Modern Vases and Vessels
Ceramic
Vase model 594 by Ettore Sottsass, Il Sestante Sottsass Italy, 1962 red glazed
Vase model 485 by Ettore Sottsas, Il Sestante Sottsass Italy ca. 1961
Vase model 485 by Ettore Sottsas, Il Sestante Sott...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Modern Vases and Vessels
Ceramic
Vase model 485 by Ettore Sottsas, Il Sestante Sottsass Italy, ca. 1961 black gazed
Vase model 585 by Ettore Sottsass, Il Sestante Sottsass Italy ca. 1961
Vase model 585 by Ettore Sottsass, Il Sestante Sot...
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1960s Italian Modern Vases and Vessels
Ceramic
Vase model 585 by Ettore Sottsass, Il Sestante Sottsass Italy, ca. 1961 silver glazed
A Set of Ceramics by Ettore Sottsass for Bitossi

By Ettore Sottsass
A Set of Ceramics by Ettore Sottsass for Bitossi
Ettore Sottsass
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Ceramics
Ceramic
The two vases and the plate offered belong to a limited edition of ‘lava glaze’ ceramic objects commissioned by the prominent Dutch department store ‘De Bijenkorf’ and were manufactured...
Ettore Sottsass ash wood table “Vienna”, Italy circa 1989

By Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass ash wood table “Vienna”, Italy cir...
Ettore Sottsass
Late 20th Century Italian Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Ash
An Ash "Vienna" Table by Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007). Made by Polronova, Italy, circa 1989. Signed Sottsass H 72cms x 184cms Long x 83.5cms deep
Ettore Sottsass "Pausania" table /desk lamp, for Artemide, Label

By Artemide, Ettore Sottsass
Ettore Sottsass "Pausania" table /desk lamp, for A...
Artemide, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Late 20th Century Italian Table Lamps
Stainless Steel, Plastic
Great design in this lamp, recorded in many books and catalog information.Label
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