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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Joe Colombo

Joe Colombo (1930-1971) was an Italian painter, sculptor and designer. Colombo studied art, but in the 1950s he assumed control of the family electrical equipment company, and he used the factory to experiment with design.

He opened his own design company in the early 1960s, and for the next decade he produced a large body of innovative work.  He theorized that technology would transform domestic life, and he sought to achieve these new environments with new materials, such as fiberglass, PVC and polyethylene. His Impronta armchair (1961), Acrilica lamp (1962), Roli chair (1962) and Universale chair (1965) were made with these materials.

His Boby taboret (1970) has remained so popular that it is still in production today, selling for over $300.  My daughter and son-in-law, who are the luckiest estate sale shoppers in the world, have found two vintage models, one they paid $1 for and another they got for $5.


Tube chair - PVC, foam and fabric, 1955

Acrilica lamp, 1962

Molded plywood armchair, 1964

Boby taboret art cart, 1970

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