Gio Ponti Furniture

Gio Ponti (Italy, 1891-1979)

An architect, furniture and industrial designer and editor, Gio Ponti was arguably the most influential figure in 20th-century Italian Modernism. Ponti designed thousands of furnishings and products — from cabinets, lamps and chairs to ceramics and coffeemakers — and his buildings, including the brawny Pirelli Tower (1956) in his native Milan, and the castle-like Denver Art Museum (1971), were erected in 14 countries. Through Domus, the magazine he founded in 1928, Ponti brought attention to virtually every significant movement and creator in the spheres of modern art and design.

     The questing intelligence Ponti brought to Domus is reflected in his work: as protean as he was prolific, Ponti’s style can’t be pegged to a specific genre. In the 1920s, as artistic director for the Tuscan porcelain maker Richard Ginori, he fused old and new; his ceramic forms were modern, but decorated with motifs from Roman antiquity. In pre-war Italy, modernist design was encouraged, and after the conflict, Ponti — along with designers such as Carlo Mollino, Franco Albini, Marco Zanuso — found a receptive audience for their novel, idiosyncratic work. Ponti’s typical furniture forms from the period, such as the wedge-shaped “Distex” chair, are simple, gently angular, and colorful; equally elegant and functional. In the 1960s and ’70s, Ponti’s style evolved again as he explored biomorphic shapes, and embraced the expressive, experimental designs of Ettore Sottsass Jr., Joe Columbo and others.

     His signature furniture piece — the one by which he is represented in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Germany’s Vitra Design Museum and elsewhere — is the sleek “Superleggera” chair, produced by Cassina starting in 1957. (The name translates as “superlightweight” — advertisements featured a model lifting it with one finger.) Ponti had a playful side, best shown in a collaboration he began in the late 1940s with the graphic artist Piero Fornasetti. Ponti furnishings were decorated with bright finishes and Fornasetti's whimsical lithographic transfer prints of things such as butterflies, birds or flowers; the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts possesses a 1950 secretary from their “Architetturra” series, which feature case pieces covered in images of building interiors and facades. The grandest project Ponti and Fornasetti undertook, however, lies on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean: the interiors of the luxury liner Andrea Doria, which sank in 1956.

     Widely praised retrospectives at the Queens Museum of Art in 2001 and at the Design Museum London in 2002 sparked a renewed interest in Ponti among modern design aficionados. (Marco Romanelli’s monograph, written for the London show, offers a fine overview of Ponti’s work.) Today, a wide array of Ponti’s designs are snapped up by savvy collectors who want to give their homes a touch of Italian panache and effortless chic.

Read more about Gio Ponti in Introspective Magazine

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1950s Folding Beech Chair "Ninfea" by Gio' Ponti
Moioli Gallery
Pair of Gio Ponti Style Club Chairs
Le Lampade
Gio Ponti Inspired Italian Cocktail Table
Stamford Modern
Pair of "Gabriella" Chairs by Gio Ponti
Sam Kaufman Gallery
Pair of Armchairs in Gio Ponti Style
Spazio 900
Gio Ponti Majolica's
Il Paralume
Pair of Benches in the Style of Gio PontiOn Hold
Brass Vanity or Desk Chair by Chiavari
Refine Modern
Italian Dry Bar Attibuted to Gio Ponti
Galleria d'Epoca
Mirror by Gio Ponti, Fontana Arte, Italy, 1959
Jochum Rodgers
Gio Ponti Style Coffee Table with Ebonized Legs
Grinard Collection
Gio Ponti Polsino Lamp
Casati Gallery
Oak Desk by Gio Ponti
Sebastian + Barquet
Set of Six Leggera Chairs by Gio Ponti for Cassina
Massive Italian Factory Table att. to Gio Ponti
Side Table Attributed to Gio Ponti for Domus Nova
Art of Vintage
Pair of Gio Ponti Lounge Chairs
Frank Landau - Selected Design Objects & Fine Art
Coffee Set in the Style of Gio Ponti, circa 1955
Rare Gio Ponti Italian Walnut Chest
Chair Attributed to Gio Ponti
Fresh Kills
12 "leggera" by Giò Ponti
Gio Ponti and Piero Fornasetti Armchair
Casati Gallery
Wooden Desk with Crossing Feet Attributed to Gio Ponti
Galerie Gr
M. Singer & Sons Italian Walnut Side Table
Assemblage Ltd.
Pair of Italian Consoles Attributed to Gio Ponti
Gary Rubinstein Antiques
Gio Ponti Style Walnut Credenza
Irwin Feld Design
Pair of Fireside Slipper Chairs
Soho Treasures
Rare 1950s Settee by Gio Ponti
Espace Camille
Giò Ponti & De Poli
Anna Maria Consadori Arte Antiquariato Design
Pair of Gio Ponti Brass Sconces by Candle
Compendio Gallery
Italian Brass and Leather X Base Bench
Archive 20th Century
Side Chair, attributed to Gio Ponti
Gio Ponti Cabinet and Sideboard for Singer & Sons
Casati Gallery
Executive Desk by Gio Ponti
Todd Merrill 20th Century
Modernist Sculpted Wall Bookcase by Gio PontiOn Hold
Lost City Arts
Gio Ponti Style Round Side Table
Le Lampade
1950s Italian Pair of Gio Ponti Style Daybed
FLAIR Florence
Pair of Gio Ponti Style Lounge Chairs
StyleLUX Gallery
Italian 1950s Walnut and Leather Bar
Michaela Bauer - Vintage Interiors
Rosewood Bar in the Style of Gio Ponti
Hayloft Design
Gio Ponti Supperleggera Model #699 Cassina, 1951
Just in Modern
Italian Modern Credenza or Bar
Pegboard Modern
Gio Ponti Daybed from the Apta SeriesOn Hold
Italian Display Case
Gio Ponti Style Chest of Drawers
Flow Modern
Gio Ponti Propeller Coffee TableOn Hold
Modest Designs
Display Cabinet Model 2140 by Gio Ponti
Nilufar Gallery