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Memphis Group Tables

Italian

To many people, postmodern design is synonymous with the Memphis Group. This Italian collaborative created the most radical and attention-getting designs of the period, upending most of the accepted standards of how furniture should look.

The Memphis story begins in 1980, when Ettore Sottsass, then a beacon of Italian postmodernism, tapped a coterie of younger designers to develop a collection for the Milan Furniture Fair the next year, determined that all the new furniture they were then seeing was boring. Their mission: Boldly reject the stark minimalism of the 1970s and shatter the rules of form and function. (Sottsass’s Ultrafragola mirror, designed in 1970, embodied many of what would become the collective’s postmodern ideals.)

The group decided to design, produce and market their own collection, one that wouldn’t be restricted by concerns like functionality and so-called good taste. Its debut, at Milan’s 1981 Salone del Mobile, drew thousands of viewers and caused a major stir in design circles.

So as a record of Bob Dylan’s “Stuck Inside of Mobile” played on repeat, they took their name from the song, devised their marketing strategy and plotted the postmodern look that would come to define the decade of excess — primary colors, blown-up proportions, playful nods to Art Deco and Pop art. A high-low mix of materials also helped define Memphis, as evidenced by Javier Mariscal’s pastel serving trays, which feature laminate veneer — a material previously used only in kitchens — as well as Shiro Kuramata’s Nara and Kyoto tables made from colored glass-infused terrazzo.

An image of Sottsass posing with his collaborators in a conversation pit shaped like a boxing ring appeared in magazines all over the world, and Karl Lagerfield furnished his Monte Carlo penthouse entirely in Memphis furniture. Meanwhile, members like Andrea Branzi, Aldo Cibic, Michele de Lucchi, Nathalie du Pasquier, Kuramata, Paola Navone, Peter Shire, George Sowden, Sottsass and his wife, journalist Barbara Radice, went on to enjoy fruitful careers.

Some people think of the Milan-based collective as the design equivalent to Patrick Nagel’s kitschy screenprints, but for others Memphis represents what made the early 1980s so great: freedom of expression, dizzying patterns and off-the-wall colors.

Eventually, the Reagan era gave way to cool 1990s minimalism, and Memphis fell out of fashion. Sottsass left the group in 1985, and by 1987, it had disbanded. Yet decades later, Memphis is back and can be traced to today’s most exciting designers.

“As someone who was born in the 1980s, Memphis at times feels like the grown-up, artsy version of the toys I used to play with,” says Shaun Kasperbauer, cofounder of the Brooklyn studio Souda. “It feels a little nostalgic, but at the same time it seems like an aesthetic that’s perfectly suited to an internet age — loud, colorful and utilizing forms that are graphic and often a little unexpected.”

Find a collection of vintage Memphis Group seating, tables, decorative objects and other furniture on 1stDibs.

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Creator: Memphis Group
Memphis Postmodern Painted Ceramic Pedestal or Side Table
By Memphis Group
Located in New York, NY
Memphis Group Postmodern ceramic hand-painted pedestal or side table with colorful geometric theme, signed twice on the lower edge. The piece was made during the 1990s and is in good...
Category

1990s American Post-Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Ceramic

Mimosa End Table with Glass Top, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Mimosa end table in plastic laminate with glass top, designed in 1984, by Ettore Sottsass. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in architecture at the...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Plastic, Glass

Alcor Glass Vase, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Alcor Glass Vase was designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1983 for Memphis. Signed on the base. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in architecture at...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Glass

Madras Table, by Nathalie du Pasquier, from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Nathalie du Pasquier, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Madras table has a beautiful contrasting laminate pattern top, designed in 1986 by Nathalie du Pasquier. Nathalie du Pasquier was born in Bordeaux, France, in 1957.She has li...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Laminate

Kristall End Table, by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Michele de Lucchi, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Kristall end table in plastic laminate, lacquered wood and metal. Designed in 1981, by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Milano. Michele De Lucchi was born in 1951 in Ferrara and gradu...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood, Plastic

Holebid Briar Coffee Table, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Holebid coffee table in briar and plastic laminate, is designed in 1984 by Ettore Sottsass. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in architecture at th...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood, Plastic

Arquitectonica 1984, Madonna Table, Desk for Memphis Milano, Postmodern Miami
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Arquitectonica
Located in Munster, NRW
Madonna table by Arquitectonica Miami for Memphis Milano, 1984. Iconic an extremely rare postmodern piece and one of the only Memphis Group productions whose design was commissione...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Round Rolling Table Sally by Shiro Kuramata for Memphis, 1987
By Memphis Group, Shiro Kuramata
Located in Vienna, AT
Round rolling table sally by Shiro Kuramata for Memphis, 1987 Iconic table 'Sally' by Shiro Kuramata, Japan, 1987 for Memphis. 20.85" glass top comprised of sandwiched laminated g...
Category

1980s Japanese Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Metal, Chrome

Flamingo Bedside Table, by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Michele de Lucchi, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Flamingo bedside table in laminated wood and plastic, designed in 1984 by Michele De Lucchi. Michele De Lucchi was born in 1951 in Ferrara and graduated in architecture in Florence....
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Plastic, Wood

Bombay Side Table, by Nathalie du Pasquier, from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Nathalie du Pasquier, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Bombay side table has a beautiful contrasting laminate pattern top, designed in 1986 by Nathalie du Pasquier. Nathalie du Pasquier was born in Bordeaux, France, in 1957.She has...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Laminate

City Chrome-Plated Steel Table, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
City table, designed in 1983 by Ettore Sottsass, is a laminated composite board with chrome-plated steel, and enameled aluminum. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 19...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Aluminum, Steel

Shiro Kuramata for Memphis Round Rolling Table Sally by, 1987
By Memphis Group, Shiro Kuramata
Located in Vienna, AT
Iconic table 'Sally' by Shiro Kuramata, Japan, 1987 for Memphis. 20.85" glass top comprised of sandwiched laminated glass with an in between layer of shattered glass and colored fi...
Category

1980s Japanese Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Metal, Chrome

Ivory Side Table, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Shiro Kuramata
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Ivory side table has a beautiful contrasting laminate pattern, designed in 1984 by Ettore Sottsass. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in archi...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Glass, Plastic

Hilton Metal and Glass Trolley, by Javier Mariscal for Memphis Milano Collection
By Javier Mariscal, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Hilton trolley in lacquered metal and crystal glass, designed in 1981 by Javier Mariscal. He was born in Valencia in 1950. In 1971 he moved to Barcelona to study Graphic Design at ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Metal

Palm Springs Briar Dining Table by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Palm Springs dining table, in briar and plastic laminate was originally designed in 1984, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood, Plastic

Tartar Table, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Tartar Table in laminated wood was originally designed in 1985, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in archite...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Emerald Side Table, by Nathalie du Pasquier for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Nathalie du Pasquier, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Emerald Sideboard in wood, plastic laminate and mirror, designed by Nathalie Du Pasquier in 1985. Nathalie du Pasquier was born in Bordeaux, France, in 1957. She has lived and worke...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Plastic, Wood

Freemont Gilded Wood Console, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Freemont gilded wood console in wood, plastic laminate and aluminum. Designed in 1985, by Ettore Sottsass. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in arc...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood, Plastic

Continental Wood Side Table, by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Continental side table designed in 1984 for Memphis, in laminated wood and plastic. Michele De Lucchi was born in 1951 in Ferrara and graduated in architecture in Florence. During t...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood, Plastic

Hollywood Steel Coffee Table, by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Peter Shire
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Hollywood laminated and lacquered steel coffee table, designed in 1983 by Peter Shire. Peter Shire is a Los Angeles artist. Shire was born in the Echo Park district of Los Angel...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Steel

Hyatt Metal and Wood Table, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Hyatt table designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1984 for Memphis, in metal and laminated wood. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in architecture at the...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Metal

Amazon Cabinet, by Marco Zanini for Memphis Milano Collection
By Marco Zanini, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Amazon Cabinet in reconstituted veneer and lacquered wood, was originally designed in 1985 by Marco Zanini for Memphis Milano. Marco Zanini was born in Trento in 1954. He gradu...
Category

2010s Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Peninsula Metal and Glass Side Table, by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano Collect.
By Memphis Group, Peter Shire
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Peninsula side table in metal and glass, was originally designed in 1982 by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano. Peter Shire is a Los Angeles artist. Shire was born in the Echo Park...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Metal

Mandarin Table, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Mandarin table in plastic laminate, metal and glass, designed in 1981 by Ettore Sottsass. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he graduated in architecture at the...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Glass, Plastic

Madonna Wooden Table, by Arquitectonica for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Arquitectonica, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Madonna table in lacquered wood, designed in 1984 by Arquitectonica. Memphis is the great cultural phenomenon of the 1980s that revolutionized creative and commercial logics in desi...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Fortune Side Table, by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Fortune Side table in plastic laminate, lacquered wood and glass. Designed in 1982, by Michele De Lucchi. Michele De Lucchi was born in 1951 in Ferrara and graduated in architectur...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Plastic, Wood

Peter Shire Memphis Milano Brazil Table in Lacquered Wood, Italy, circa 1981
By Memphis Group, Peter Shire
Located in New York, NY
Peter Shire (b. 1947) An exceptionally imaginative and dynamic architectural console, dining table, and desk by Peter Shire for Ettore Sottsass' Memphis Group. A striking interplay ...
Category

1980s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Memphis Group: Three Nesting Tables by Marco Zanini, Enameled Steel, Italy 1980s
By Marco Zanini, Memphis Group
Located in New York, NY
Marco Zanini (b. 1954) A rare and striking set of three early square geometric nesting tables by Italian tastemaker Marco Zanini, co-founder with Ettore Sottsass of the Memphis Mila...
Category

Mid-20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Enamel, Steel, Chrome

Brazil Side Table, by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Peter Shire, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Brazil side and console table in lacquered wood, was originally designed in 1981 by Peter Shire. Peter Shire is a Los Angeles artist. Shire was born in the Echo Park district o...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Ettore Sottsas Hyatt Memphis Milano Postmodern
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Ettore Sottsass's Hyatt side table.  
Category

1980s European Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Stainless Steel

Michele de Lucchi Burgundy Table Memphis Italy, 1985
By Memphis Group, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Vienna, AT
Iconic dining table, laminated wood and steel, Michele de Lucchi burgundy table Memphis Italy, 1985. Rare dining table designed by Memphis (originally founded by Ettore Sottsass) ...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Steel

Table "Brazil" by Peter Shire, Memphis Milano, 1981
By Memphis Group, Peter Shire
Located in Berlin, DE
Table "Brazil" by Peter Shire, Memphis Milano 1981
Category

Late 20th Century Italian Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Wood

Set of Three Glass Tables with Wheels, Memphis, 1987
By Memphis Group
Located in Frankfurt / Dreieich, DE
Set of three glass tables with wheels, Memphis, 1987. Marked with 7 1987. Very good condition. Measures: Diameter 50 cm, height 1 x 54 cm, 2 x 39 cm.
Category

1980s Italian Modern Vintage Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Iron, Metal

Kyoto Metal and Terrazo End Table, by Shiro Kuramata for Memphis Milano Collect.
By Memphis Group, Shiro Kuramata, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Kyoto end table in metal and terrazzo, designed in 1983 by Shiro Kuramata. Shiro Kuramata studied architecture at Tokyo Polytechnic in Tokyo until 1953. Then he spent a year workin...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Tables

Materials

Metal

Memphis Group tables for sale on 1stDibs

Memphis Group tables are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive objects are often made of wood and designed with extraordinary care. In our Memphis Group collection, there are many options to choose from, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. There are 9 vintage versions of these items in stock, while there are 29 modern editions to choose from as well. Many of the original tables by Memphis Group were created in the Modern style in Europe during the 21st Century and Contemporary. Many customers also consider tables by Draga & Aurel, Desalto and Fratelli Boffi if you’re looking for additional options. Prices for Memphis Group tables can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. 1stDibs's price starts at $1,868 and tops out at $27,157, while pieces like these can sell for $5,674.
Questions About Memphis Group Tables
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    Numerous artists and designers were in the Memphis Group. Ettore Sottsass founded the collective and served as its leader. Other members included Aldo Cibic, Andrea Branzi, Javier Mariscal, Martine Bedin, Massimo Iosa Ghini, Michael Graves, Michele De Lucchi, Nathalie du Pasquier, Peter Shire and Shiro Kuramata. You'll find a range of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group was an art and design collective formed in 1980 by Ettore Sottsass. The group debuted in 1981 and continued working together until 1987, producing furniture, decorative objects and textiles. Shop a selection of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group formed in 1980 when Italian designer Ettore Sottsass invited fellow artists and designers to band together and create a collective. In 1981, the group debuted with a show in Milan, Italy, and continued to collaborate until disbanding in 1987. You'll find a variety of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group was created by Italian designer Ettore Sottsass to bring together artists and designers with similar visions. He hoped to combine the ideas of all the members and create single furniture and decorative object designs under one name. You'll find a collection of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Italian designer Ettore Sottsass founded the Memphis Group in 1980 to fulfill his vision of having a team of like-minded designers collaborating to produce unique furniture and decorative objects. In 1981, the group held their first exhibition and continued to design together until 1987. You'll find a selection of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group designed a wide variety of items from 1980 to 1987 when the collective was active. Their designs included furniture and textiles as well as decorative objects made out of ceramics, metal and glass. Shop a collection of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group had an eclectic style created by combining the creativity of numerous artists and designers. Its furniture, textiles and decorative aspects blend elements of Pop Art and Art Deco design. Shop a range of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group debuted their designs in 1981 with an exhibition at the Salone del Mobile of Milan in Milan, Italy. Although many people criticized their designs at the time, the design group developed a cult following that boasted famous creatives like fashion designer Karl Lagerfield and musician David Bowie. Shop a variety of Memphis Group furniture at 1stDibs.
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    The Memphis Group got its name from the Bob Dylan song "Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again." During the group's first meeting led by Italian designer Ettore Sottsas the song was on repeat, and the gathered artists and designers drew inspiration from the title. You'll find a variety of Memphis Group furniture on 1stDibs.

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