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Luigi Fontana

Italian, 1854-1946

The bread and butter of the glassmaking company that Luigi Fontana founded in 1881 in Milan, Italy, was plate-glass panels for the construction industry. In 1930, Fontana met Gio Ponti — then the artistic director of the Richard Ginori ceramics workshop and the editor of the influential magazine Domus — at a biannual design exhibition that became the precursor to today’s Milan Design Triennale, and the two hatched an idea for a furniture and housewares firm. Fontana Arte was incorporated in 1932 with Ponti as its chief of design.

Best known for its elegant and innovative vintage lighting fixtures, Fontana Arte pioneered one of the key features of 20th-century and contemporary Italian design: the union of artistry and industry wrought by partnerships between creative talents — chiefly architects — and entrepreneurial businesses. Fontana Arte is further distinguished by having had as artistic director, in succession, four of Italy’s most inventive modernist designers: Gio Ponti, Pietro Chiesa, French transplant Max Ingrand and Gae Aulenti.

Ponti contributed several lamps that remain among the company’s signature works, including the orb-atop-cone Bilia table lamp and the 0024 pendant — a stratified hanging sphere.

In 1933, Fontana Arte partnered with the influential Milan studio glassmaker and retailer Pietro Chiesa, who took over as artistic director. Chiesa’s designs for lighting — as well as for tables and items including vases and ashtrays — express an appreciation for fluidity and simplicity of line, as seen in works such as his flute-shaped Luminator floor lamp and the 1932 Fontana table — an arched sheet of glass that is held in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art.

Six years after Chiesa’s 1948 death, the École des Beaux Arts–trained Max Ingrand took over as head of design at Fontana Arte. Ingrand brought a similarly expressive formal sensibility to wares such as table lamps and mirrors, but he also had a masterful eye for the manipulation of glass surfaces — whether they be cut, frosted, acid-etched or sand-blasted. His classic design is the Fontana table lamp of 1954, which has a truncated cone shade and curved body, both of which are made of pure, chic white-frosted glass.

Following Ingrand, the often-audacious Italian architect Gae Aulenti served as the company’s artistic director from 1979 to 1996, and while she generally insisted that furnishings take second place aesthetically to architecture, she made an exception for Fontana Arte pieces such as the Tavolo con Ruote series of glass coffee and dining tables on wheels, bold lighting pieces such as the Parola series and the Giova, a combination flower vase and table lamp. As a key incubator of modern design under Aulenti’s tenure, Fontana Arte remained true to its long-held commitment — creating objects that have never been less than daring.

Find vintage Luigi Fontana mirrors, lighting and more on 1stDibs.

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Creator: Luigi Fontana
Fontana Arte Midcentury Wall Round Brass Mirror with Engraved Stars, Italy 1950s
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Milano, IT
Rare and fine mirror with brass frame and beautiful engraved stars. A worm yellow velvet band supports the mirror thanks to two brass rings. The original brown disc close the back.
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Brass

Italian Table Mirror by Luigi Fontana, 1940s
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Palermo, PA
Italian table mirror by Luigi Fontana, 1930s. Dimensions: H= 35 cm; W= 25 cm; D= 2 cm.
Category

1930s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Metal

Italian table mirror by Luigi Fontana, 1930s
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Palermo, PA
Italian table mirror by Luigi Fontana, 1930s. Dimensions: H= 33 cm; W= 27 cm; D= 1 cm.
Category

1930s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Metal

Luigi Fontana Early 20th Century Italian Oval Mirror, 1927
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Roma, IT
Amazing early 20th century oval mirror with external mirror frame. This piece is signed by Luigi Fontana, dated October 14, 1927 and designed in Palermo, Italy. This piece has som...
Category

1920s Italian Other Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Mirror

Collectible Mirror Designed by Gio Ponti Production Luigi Fontana, Fontana Arte
By Fontana Arte, Gio Ponti, Luigi Fontana
Located in taranto, IT
Rare collector's mirror, designed by Gio Ponti, produced by Luigi Fontana for Fontana Arte, 1940s. Wooden structure, blue mirrors (... in the photos it appears blue and light blue...
Category

1940s Italian Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Glass, Mirror, Wood

Max Ingrand Round Side Table in Wood and Mirrored Crystal for Luigi Fontana 1960
By Luigi Fontana, Max Ingrand
Located in Montecatini Terme, IT
Round low coffee table with structure in wood and mirrored crystal on top in a orangy shade, designed by Max Ingrand for Luigi Fontana & Co, 1960 ca. Original manufacturer's label i...
Category

1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Crystal

Vanity Mirror from Luigi Fontana for Fontana Arte, Milano, 1940s
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Lugano, TI
Stunning early and rare vanity mirror by Pietro Chiesa and Luigi Fontana for Fontana Arte, 1940's. Marked L. Fontana & C. Milano in the back.   
Category

1940s Italian Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Mirror

1930 Vedar luigi Fontana Art Deco Murano Glass Ceiling Lamp
By Luigi Fontana, Vedar - Vetri d'Arte
Located in Brescia, IT
Art deco ceiling lamp Hand Painted frosted glass and silk cord Excellent condiction, just micro chip on the edge (look the picture) H glass : 22 cm diam glass 25 cm h lamp: 100 cm...
Category

1930s Italian Art Deco Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Art Glass

Rare Pietro Chiesa Hanging Blue Mirrored Cabinet Bar for Fontana Arte, 1940
By Pietro Chiesa, Luigi Fontana
Located in Rome, IT
Rare Pietro Chiesa illuminated hanging cabinet bar for Fontana Arte, circa 1940 Central door with deco drawings engraved on the mirror two shelves, fantastic and rare blue mirrored...
Category

1940s Italian Art Deco Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Glass, Mirror, Walnut

Round Wall Mirror, by Luigi Fontana, Fontana Arte, Wood Frame Leather Covered
By Luigi Fontana, Fontana Arte
Located in Vigonza, Padua
Round Wall Mirror, by Fontana Arte, wood frame leather covered, rope hanging. Very rare mirror of the Fontanit which was followed by numerous fashionable productions in Italy and t...
Category

Mid-20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Luigi Fontana

Materials

Leather, Wood

20th Century Gio Ponti Circular Wall Mirror for Luigi Fontana in Nickel Brass
By Gio Ponti, Luigi Fontana
Located in Turin, Turin
Wonderful Circular Mirror designed in 30s by Gio Ponti for the producer Luigi Fontana. The mirror has a structure in nickel plated brass, on the mirror there is the brandmark of the...
Category

1930s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Brass

Mid-Century Modern Mirror with Transparent Shaped Glass Frame & Brass, L Fontana
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Firenze, Tuscany
Luigi Fontana, before founding Fontana Arte, made this mirror in 1940 in Milan. Stamped with two crossed swords on the top front.
Category

1940s Italian Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Brass

Table Mirror of Luigi Fontana & C of the 1950s
By Luigi Fontana
Located in Wolfurt, AT
The table mirror of Luigi Fontana & C, Milano, of the 1950s in Italy brings a special, playful accessoire into your home. Caused by it's form of a color palette.
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Mirror

Vanity Mirror by Luigi Fontana for Fontana Arte, 1940
By Fontana Arte, Luigi Fontana
Located in Milano, IT
Wonderful vanity mirror designed by Luigi Fontana for Fontana Arte in the 1940s. The vanity mirror by Luigi Fontana has a sweet shaped and emulated form, it was made with mirrored g...
Category

1940s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Luigi Fontana

Materials

Iron

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Mid-Century Modern Italian Round Wood Table with Thick Glass Top, Milano, 1950s
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Previously Available Items
Italian Brass Mirror by Luigi Fontana
By Luigi Fontana, Fontana Arte
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Early Italian brass mirror by Luigi Fontana. Made in Italy circa 1940s. Retains original label.
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1940s Italian Vintage Luigi Fontana

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  • Italian Brass Mirror by Luigi Fontana
  • Italian Brass Mirror by Luigi Fontana
  • Italian Brass Mirror by Luigi Fontana
  • Italian Brass Mirror by Luigi Fontana
H 23.75 in. W 15.5 in. D 1.25 in.
Mirror in Pink Glass Design Gio Ponti for Luigi Fontana, Fontana Arte, 1940s
By Fontana Arte, Gio Ponti, Luigi Fontana
Located in taranto, IT
Splendid and very rare mirror in pink glass with inclusions in wood treated with gold leaf, Luigi Fontana production for Fontana Arte, 1930s / 40s on the back covering in solid wo...
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Curved Glass Lantern by Luigi Fontana, circa 1940
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Rare glass lantern designed by Luigi Fontana in the 1930-1940s. Six tapered and curved pale-aquamarine glass panes are arranged around a delicate brass structure. Three original bras...
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1920s Table Mirror by Luigi Fontana for Fontana Arte, Clear Mirror
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Late 1920s early 1930s table mirror, stamped Luigi Fontana & C. Milano on the back support, this piece has to be considered an early Fontana Arte rare jewel which still carries an ar...
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Early Luigi Fontana for Fontanit Glass Mirror in Green or Blue, Italy, 1950s
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Italian Unique Chandelier Designed by Pietro Chiesa, Milano, 1930s
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Rare wall mirror by Gio Ponti, expertised Gio Ponti Archives
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Luigi Fontana furniture for sale on 1stDibs

Luigi Fontana furniture are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive items are frequently made of Mirror and are designed with extraordinary care. There are many options in our Luigi Fontana collection of furniture, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. There are 9 vintage versions of these items in stock, while there is 0 modern edition to choose from as well. Many original furniture by Luigi Fontana were created in Italy during the 20th century in the mid-century modern style. Many customers also consider furniture by Fratelli Marelli, Home Collection Turin and Corrado Corradi Dell'acqua if you are looking for additional options. Prices for Luigi Fontana furniture can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. 1stDibs's price starts at $1,480 and tops out at $18,507, while pieces like these can sell for $3,685.

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