designers & pinocchio

May 16, 2012
they are everywhere, on billboards, magazines, plastic cutlery, and even pantyhose packaging. they sign on everything, from bottles to bicycles. their hits are eagerly awaited, admired, criticized, analyzed, and collected by eager fans.we’re not talking about rock stars; or perhaps we are: design rock stars!!!

they come with the whole package, fan-clubs & fab life. they are pop culture elements: philippe starck and his leather jackets, karim rashid and his pink life, marcel wanders and his wooden necklaces…all are recognizable icons of a powerful marketing machine.

designers are a major marketing tool for their products. people like starck have played a key role in democratizing design, and bringing it closer to consumers.  their image is their brand, sometimes even erasing the product they have designed. thanks to them, design is a lifestyle statement, more than a necessity.


those constantly under the spot-lights are a minority. numerous other remarkable designers are sparkling stars in their own way. passionates, curve fanatics, wood or glass lovers, they make what design is. they are the real deal. taking objects and habits out of beaten tracks, they accompany changes, step by step, far from glitzy magazines and mundane parties. they create the ideas that make everyday life nicer.

studio is a good example of those design-passionates. working regularly for european powerhouses like ligne roset, rolf benz, green, calligaris, cinna, pedrali, desalto, and fasem, they spearhead technological and esthetic breakthroughs in the field.

archirivolto founders, claudio dondoli and marco pocci, are originally from colle d’elsa, near siena, in the tuscan countryside, where the “archirivolto” studio has its head office today. dondoli and pocci met in florence at the faculty of architecture. in 1983, having shared not only their studies but also an intense artistic and theatrical experience, they founded their own industrial planning and architecture studio.  since 1989 archirivolto has been working exclusively on industrial design.

“there is no beauty without functionality. this is the most innovative synthesis of design”, says pocci.

on a quick visit to lebanon not too long ago, we sat with marco pocci, the epicurean half of the duo, around a “mezzes” table and a good glass of arak for a laid-back chat. here-after some notable excerpts of our conversation…
“true innovation is based on technology and materials. technology’s endeavor is not image creation; to be of genuine quality, a good design must be beautiful, efficient and comfortable. the ideal product is a perfect balance between ergonomics and esthetics, comfort and design. it must be a useful product, one that last in time, remain pertinent, far from pre-established rules. it must create attraction…and of course have an affordable price!”

are renowned plastic specialists, consulted mainly in seating solutions. they often get inspired by cultural and historic elements and details, which they reinterpret with contemporary materials. for them, a project essence starts from the deep knowledge of the client and brand codes to achieve the perfect product.

“industrial conception is not just the search for the most innovative materials and processes for the best results to be achieved; it must be nurtured by imagination, beauty, harmony, freedom of expression, and a combination of smart ideas”, adds pocci. “it is like the story of pinocchio: from the dead branch of wood, comes out a beautiful living work of art”.


Leave a Reply