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Big Sur Wooden Couch, by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano Collection

$15,924.90per item

About

The Big Sur couch is made out of 100% wool, and the structure is in lacquered wood. The couch was originally designed in 1986 by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano. Peter Shire is a Los Angeles artist. Shire was born in the Echo Park district of Los Angeles, where he currently lives and works. His sculpture, furniture and ceramics have been exhibited in the United States, Italy, France, Japan and Poland, Shire has been associated with the Memphis Group of designers, has worked on the Design Team for the XXIII Olympiad with the American Institute of Architects, and has designed public sculptures in Los Angeles and other California cities. Shire has been honored by awards for his contribution to the cultural life of the City of Los Angeles. Memphis Milano is the great cultural phenomenon of the 1980s that revolutionized creative and commercial logics in design. Born from the idea of Ettore Sottsass and a group of young designers and architects, in Milan, coupled in the years by famous designers from the international scene, Memphis turned upside down all of the existing parameters on living. Ettore Sottsass as the backbone of the group, design gained a new concept and expression through new shapes, materials and patterns, expanding the creative limits of the industry. Memphis became a symbol of new design. Its influence is still clear in various sectors of production and beyond. Additional info: - Dimensions: W 82.67, D 28.34, H 37.79 inches - Materials: Wool and lacquered wood. - Purchased products are shipped with forms of authenticity by Memphis Milano, as well as a metal plaque which contains the signature of the designer, and the year which the product was originally designed in. - Pricing: Prices do not include VAT.

Details

  • Creator
    Peter Shire (Designer),Memphis Group (Manufacturer),Memphis Milano (Manufacturer)
  • Dimensions
    Height: 37.8 in (96 cm)Width: 82.68 in (210 cm)Depth: 28.35 in (72 cm)
  • Style
    Modern (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
    Wood,Wool,Lacquered
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    Contemporary
  • Production Type
    New & Custom(Current Production)
  • Estimated Production Time
    15-16 weeks
  • Condition
  • Seller Location
    Pregnana Milanese, IT
  • Reference Number
    Seller: 188860131stDibs: LU4830117348762

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    Retrieving quote...
    Ships From: Pregnana Milanese, Italy
  • Return Policy

    This item cannot be returned.

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About the Manufacturer

Memphis Group

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.

About the Seller
4.9
Located in Pregnana Milanese, Italy
Recognized Seller
These prestigious sellers are industry leaders and represent the highest echelon for item quality and design.
Established in 2019
1stDibs seller since 2019
119 sales on 1stDibs
Typical response time: 6 hours
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