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Fornasetti

Piero Fornasetti (Italy, 1913–88)
Piero Fornasetti (Italy, 1913–88)

The Italian artist, illustrator and furniture maker Piero Fornasetti was one of the wittiest and most imaginative design talents of the 20th century. He crafted an inimitable decorative style from a personal vocabulary of images that included birds, butterflies, hot-air balloons, architecture and — most frequently, and in some 500 variations — an enigmatic woman’s face based on that of the 19th-century opera singer Lina Cavalieri. Fornasetti used transfer prints of these images, rendered in the style of engravings, to decorate an endless variety of furnishings and housewares that ranged from chairs, tables and desks to dinner plates, lamps and umbrella stands. His work is archly clever, often surreal and always fun.

Fornasetti was born in Milan, the son of an accountant, and he lived his entire life in the city. He showed artistic talent as a child and enrolled at Milan’s Brera Academy of Fine Art in 1930, but was expelled after two years for consistently failing to follow his professors’ orders. A group of his hand-painted silk scarves, displayed in the 1933 Triennale di Milano, caught the eye of the architect and designer Gio Ponti, who, in the 1940s, became Fornasetti’s collaborator and patron. Beginning in the early 1950s, they created a striking a series of desks, bureaus and secretaries that pair Ponti’s signature angular forms with Fornasetti’s decorative motifs — lighthearted arrangements of flowers and birds on some pieces, austere architectural imagery on others. The two worked together on numerous commissions for interiors, though their greatest project has been lost: the first-class lounges and restaurants of the luxury ocean liner Andrea Doria, which sank in 1956.

Fornasetti furnishings occupy an unusual and compelling niche in the decorative arts: they are odd yet pack a serious punch. They act, essentially, as functional sculpture. A large Fornasetti piece such as a cabinet or a desk can change the character of an entire room; his smaller works have the aesthetic power of a vase of flowers, providing a bright and alluring decorative note. The chimerical, fish-nor-fowl nature of Fornasetti’s work may be its greatest strength. It stands on its own. Bringing the Fornasetti look into the future is Barnaba Fornasetti, who took the reins of the company after his father's death.

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Coffee Table by Piero Fornasetti
By Fornasetti
Located in Carpaneto Piacentino, Italy
Brilliant yellow coffee table attributed to Fornasetti. Yellow and multicolor top tray with the iconic dirigible and hot-air balloons theme. The below structure is a dark wood decora...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Carpet "Il bacio" by Barnaba Fornasetti, Italy, 2007, Nilufar Edition
By Fornasetti
Located in Milan, IT
Carpet Il bacio by Barnaba Fornasetti. Italy, 2007. Nilufar Edition. Hand-knotted, polychrome New Zealand wool. 200 x 150 cm - 78.7 x 59 in Please note: Prices do not include VAT. V...
Category

Early 2000s Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wool

Piero Fornasetti Strumenti Red Wastepaper Basket Brass Frame Masonite Italy 1955
By Fornasetti
Located in Catania, IT
"Strumenti" wastepaper basket produced by Fornasetti Milano in Italy, 1955. The structure is in masonite and has brass frame. Superficial wastepaper is decorated with six different...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Fornasetti

Materials

Brass

Piero Fornasetti Bandiere Wastepaper Basket Silkscreened Metal Brass, 1960
By Fornasetti
Located in Catania, IT
"Bandiere" wastepaper basket produced by Fornasetti Milano in Italy, 1960s. Silk- screened metal wastepaper is decorated with sixtyeight old flags like that of "Malta", "Brabant", "...
Category

1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Fornasetti

Materials

Brass, Sheet Metal

Cylindrical Handmade Black Pleated Silk Lampshade
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This cylindrical lampshade in silk with a metal frame is the ideal complement to create, together with the base, a lamp that becomes an art object. Any minor discrepancies between...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Cylindrical Handmade White Silk Lampshade
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This cylindrical lampshade in silk with a metal frame is the ideal complement to create, together with the base, a lamp that becomes an art object. Any minor discrepancies between...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Cylindrical Handmade White Pleated Silk Lampshade
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This cylindrical lampshade in silk with a metal frame is the ideal complement to create, together with the base, a lamp that becomes an art object. Any minor discrepancies between...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Handmade Centrepiece Tema E Variazioni n°399 White Black Burnished Gold
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The art of the table is manifested in this hand-decorated porcelain centrepiece with gold accents: Fornasetti's unmistakable decorative style makes it a true collector's item. Any...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Ceramic

Handmade Decorative Centrepiece Rosone Black White Gold
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The art of the table is manifested in this hand-decorated porcelain centrepiece with gold accents: Fornasetti's unmistakable decorative style makes it a true collector's item. Any...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Ceramic

Decorative Ceramic Cat Bitossi Fiorato, Gold Flowers on Turquoise
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A coveted collector’s item as early as the 1950s, Fornasetti cats surprise with the sophisticated decorations that colour their surroundings with sheer exuberance.
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Ceramic

Decorative Zodiac Oval Plate Astronomici Black White Gold
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The porcelain is a material that offers Fornasetti the greatest freedom of expression and is best suited to accommodate the Atelier's endless variety of decorations. Here the zodiaca...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Ceramic

Decorative Ceramic Cat Bitossi Mantellato on White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A coveted collector’s item as early as the 1950s, Fornasetti cats surprise with the sophisticated decorations that colour their surroundings with sheer exuberance.
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Ceramic

Fornasetti Handmade Wood Frame with Convex Mirror Cammei Gold Sponged Bordeaux
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the mirrors turn an everyday action into an aesthetic experience. This mirror frame is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. It is silk-...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood, Glass

Set 6 Porcelain Handmade Optical Plates Egocentrismo Black White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This set of six hand-decorated porcelain plates, as a whole, forms the figure of Egocentrismo. You can use the ensemble for ornamental purposes or as wall plates, thanks to the two h...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Porcelain

Set 12 Porcelain Plates Eva Black/White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This set of twelve hand-decorated porcelain plates, as a whole, forms the figure of Eva. You can use the ensemble for ornamental purposes or as wall plates, thanks to the two holes o...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Porcelain

Set 12 Porcelain Plates Adamo Black/White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This set of twelve hand-decorated porcelain plates, as a whole, forms the figure of Adamo. You can use the ensemble for ornamental purposes or as wall plates, thanks to the two holes...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Porcelain

Set 12 Porcelain Plates Adamo Black/White/Gold
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This set of twelve hand-decorated porcelain plates, as a whole, forms the figure of Adamo. You can use the ensemble for ornamental purposes or as wall plates, thanks to the two holes...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Porcelain

Cylindrical Lamp Base Comme Des Fornà, Black White Red
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The cylindrical shape allows Fornasetti's imagination to create surprising decorative effects in which the shapes follow one another endlessly. The architectural design makes this ha...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Cylindrical Metal Lamp Base Architettura Black and White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The cylindrical shape allows Fornasetti's imagination to create surprising decorative effects in which the shapes follow one another endlessly. The architectural design makes this ha...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Cylindrical Metal Lamp Base Viso Black/White, Iconical Fornasetti Face Decor
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The cylindrical shape allows Fornasetti's imagination to create surprising decorative effects in which the shapes follow one another endlessly. The metafisical face design makes this...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Set 12 Porcelain Plates Eva Black/White/Gold
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
This set of twelve hand-decorated porcelain plates, as a whole, forms the figure of Eve. You can use the ensemble for ornamental purposes or as wall plates, thanks to the two holes o...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Porcelain

Pair of Table Lamps Model Julia by Fornasetti
By Fornasetti
Located in Brussels, BE
Pair of table lamps model Julia by Fornasetti, sticker on the base, circa 1970.
Category

1970s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Contemporary Fornasetti Carpet Rug Lock Keyhole Silk Wool Red Black White Lady
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Fornasetti rugs born from the combination of classical and contemporary themes and the visual universe of the Milanese Atelier turns into sensory surfaces imbued with a playful and d...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wool

Fornasetti Round Tray Tema e Variazioni N°1 Black/White Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is hand-crafted using original artisan techniques. Measures: 60cm Diameter This tray is silk-screened by hand and covered with a smooth lac...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Round Tray Ortensia Hydrangea Hand Colored Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, it is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Measures:...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Rectangular Tray Sardine Silver Leaf on Black
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Fornasetti's trays are one of the best ways to enjoy the artist's unique designs and whimsical illustrations. The tray is the object with more variations than any other produced by ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Rectangular Tray Coromandel Silver Leaf on Carmine Red
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Me...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Rectangular Tray Scimmie Monkeys Hand Colored Wood
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Mea...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Round Tray Bocca Red Lips Hand Colored on White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Round Tray Serratura Keyhole Handcrafted Red Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Measures: 40cm diame...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Round Tray Marianne Hand Colored on Black
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Mea...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Round Tray Silviasub Hand Colored on Black
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Round Tray Gift Tema e Variazioni n°171 Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Mea...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Rectangular Tray Serpente Snake Carmine Red Wood
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. The...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Round Tray Don Giovanni Metal Black/White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Measures: 60cm diameter ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Rectangular Tray Braccio Con Pistola on Black Wood
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the tray is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This tray is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. Mea...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Wooden and Metal Box Champagne Black/White Hand Painted
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the boxes turn an everyday action into an aesthetic experience. The Fornasetti boxes are a whimsical place to keep your most precious items. This ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Wooden and Metal Box Serratura Black/White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the boxes turn an everyday action into an aesthetic experience. The Fornasetti boxes are a whimsical place to keep your most precious items. This ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Wooden and Metal Box Egocentrismo Black or White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the boxes turn an everyday action into an aesthetic experience. The Fornasetti boxes are a whimsical place to keep your most precious items. This ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Table Bocca Red Lips Brass Tripod Base
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A Fornasetti table is the perfect synthseis of the artist's vision: a perfect balance of functional design and visionary illustrations that bring new meaning to a common object. Meas...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Brass

Fornasetti Table Top Cortile Celeste Architectural Motif, Wooden Legs
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A Fornasetti table is the perfect synthseis of the artist's vision: a perfect balance of functional design and visionary illustrations that bring new meaning to a common object. ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Table Architettura Celeste Column Base Wood
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A Fornasetti table is the perfect synthesis of the artist's vision: a perfect balance of functional design and visionary illustrations that bring new meaning to a common object. Meas...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Table Sole Splendente Sun Brass Tripod Base
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A Fornasetti table is the perfect synthesis of the artist's vision: a perfect balance of functional design and visionary illustrations that bring new meaning to a common object. Meas...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Brass

Fornasetti Table Bocca Red Lips Brass Tripod Base
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
A Fornasetti table is the perfect synthesis of the artist's vision: a perfect balance of functional design and visionary illustrations that bring new meaning to a common object. Meas...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Brass

Rug Coromandel Beige
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Fornasetti rugs born from the combination of classical and contemporary themes and the visual universe of the Milanese Atelier turns into sensory surfaces imbued with a playful and d...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wool

Contemporary by Fornasetti Carpet Rug Zebra Wool Silk Yellow Black White Large
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Fornasetti rugs born from the combination of classical and contemporary themes and the visual universe of the Milanese Atelier turns into sensory surfaces imbued with a playful and d...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wool

Fornasetti Bookends Serratura on Red Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
There can be wit and unpredictability in the order: this was Fornasetti idea when he designed his first bookends. The mix of images with their functional design make these accessorie...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Bookends Strumenti Musicali Gold on Red Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
There can be wit and unpredictability in the order: this was Fornasetti idea when he designed his first bookends. The mix of images with their functional design make these accessorie...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Bookends Gift Tema E Variazioni N. 171 Black/White/Red Metal
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
There can be wit and unpredictability in the order: this was Fornasetti idea when he designed his first bookends. The mix of images with their functional design make these accessorie...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal

Fornasetti Obelisk Cammei Hand Painted Silver/Red/Sponged Green Vintage Taste
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, it is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This obelisk is silk-screened by hand, hand-finished and covered with a smooth lacquer. This...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Screen Scaletta Black/White Wood
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The screen is handcrafted using original artisan techniques, like all Fornasetti pieces of furniture. Measures: cm 200 x 205 H. This screen is silk-screened by hand, hand-finished a...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Wood

Fornasetti Paper Basket Mani Hands Black and White Metal Brass
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the paper basket is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This piece is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lac...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Brass, Metal

Fornasetti Paper Basket Architettura Black and White Handcrafted Metal Brass
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the paper basket is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This piece is silk-screened by hand and covered with a smooth lacquer. The shap...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal, Brass

Fornasetti Paper Basket Casa Con Colonne Architectural Motif Black and White
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the paper basket is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This piece is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lac...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Metal, Brass

Fornasetti Paper Basket Farfalle Butterflies Hand Colored on White Metal Brass
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
Like all Fornasetti accessories, the paper basket is handcrafted using original artisan techniques. This piece is silk-screened by hand, painted by hand and covered with a smooth lac...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Brass, Metal

Fornasetti Silk Cushion Polipo Octopus
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The Fornasetti cushions will add to each room an unexpected detail thanks to the most iconic Italian atelier designs. Material: Silk Size: 45 cm × 45 cm Made in Italy Cush...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Silk

Fornasetti Cushion Ape Bee from the Series Tema e Variazioni Cotton
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The Fornasetti cushions will add to each room an unexpected detail thanks to the most iconic Italian atelier designs. The decoration features two variations from the famous Forna...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Cotton

Fornasetti Cushion Mano Hand from the Series Tema e Variazioni Cotton
By Fornasetti
Located in MILANO, IT
The Fornasetti cushions will add to each room an unexpected detail thanks to the most iconic Italian atelier designs. The decoration features two variations from the famous Forna...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Fornasetti

Materials

Cotton

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