Event 2022

THE AUTHOR’S THREAD - Textiles by Torri Lana, as seen in the projects of Gianfranco Frattini over decades of collaboration.

The synergistic collaboration between Gianfranco Frattini and Torri Lana continues. Started in 1955 through a happenstance encounter, as it is so often the case, over the years their relationship developed into a lively cross-pollination of creativity that produced textiles of basic patterns, equal parts rigorous and colorful, reflecting Frattini’s typical style.

Today, this design effervescence makes a comeback thanks to Emanuela Frattini Magnusson, daughter of the design Maestro, who
has come out with a personal reinterpretation of these textiles punctuated by new color palettes.
Comparable to the effect of new clothing, Torri Lana’s refreshed textiles dress a selection of iconic Gianfranco Frattini products which
were originally conceived for the new reality of post-war Italian design. They will be on display at the company’s showroom in Milan during
the Milano Design Week 2022, from June 6th to 12th.

Frattini and Torri Lana had been working closely for a long time, initially connected by Jole Gandolini, a historic textile designer and
weaver, who has been collaborating with Torri Lana since the ‘70s (and exclusively since 1983).
Jole remembers: «Very early on in my career, young and inexperienced with my small suitcase of samples, I went to see Gio Ponti, and
Ponti told me: “...go and see (il) Frattini”. And Gianfranco (il Frattini) in turn told me “We must go and see Cesare (Cassina)...” That’s how
we had our start, many decades working on everything from upholstered furniture to interior architecture».
The decades of work shared by Gianfranco Frattini, Jole Gandolini, and Torri Lana have resulted in many innovative products, such as
the unusual yarn combinations (groundbreaking for the time), for solid colors and textures in the ‘50s and ‘60s, complex monochromatic
wool constructions that created patterns through the weave in the ‘70s, and matelassé constructions like the one adopted for the Tokyo
Hilton Hotel in the ‘80s. Present throughout are variations of checkerboard/gingham patterns in various dimensions, which Gianfranco
Frattini often used as wall-coverings and to clad cabinetry in a spatial continuum; they are reintroduced today in the wider context of his
re-editions.


Checkerboard layouts at three different scales are re-worked in modernized hues of primary colors: Emanuela’s kaleidoscopic imagination
is expressed through vibrant combinations, in high quality cotton and wool yarns, woven into textiles for interiors on jacquard looms.
The typology and construction of Torri Lana’s textiles draw directly from the original product swatch books (still available in the company's
archive) which Gianfranco Frattini used when designing his interiors projects. Emanuela’s recent “restyling” introduces 15 new colors, an
extended palette which allows multiple combinations, seven of which have been selected for an exclusive presentation in the via Pietro
Calvi showroom. The construction and detailing of the pattern is an exact replica of Gianfranco Frattini’s, a direct reference to the ‘50s,
‘60s, and ‘70s constructions when texture and color were inextricably linked.


The protagonist of the exhibition is the mod. 849 lounge chair, originally designed by Frattini in 1956 for Cassina, and which serves as
the embodiment of a modern identity that pervades the entire exhibit. The new textile gives this classic a pop—a daring look identity—
harmoniously complementing the delicate envelope of its curves.
Similarly, the Dooor textile door acts as a backdrop that garners its own attention: Torri Lana’s textiles in the new coloration give it a
decorative character that further enhances its function as architectural space divider. It is an homage to Frattini’s creative genius, given
how often he made use of this element in his projects, ultimately establishing it as one of the icons of mid century interior design.
The exhibition is enriched by several objects designed by Frattini, punctuating the display with a nod to many different materials: the
mod.780 stacking tables for Cassina, the Turner rotating bookcase for Poltrona Frau, the Gong side tables for Acerbis, the Boalum
lights
for Artemide, and a series of objects (drinking glasses, bottles, flatware, trays, ashtrays et al) for Argenteria Ricci and Progetti.
Starting with a look at his textile work this small exhibition is a tribute to the Gianfranco Frattini’s creativity, most of all to the timelessness
of his design process, which transcended epochs and styles, while consistently maintaining its own freshness and elegance.

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