Achille Castiglioni. Publicity photo

From November 11 to 28 the Art Academy of Latvia will host «Casa Castiglioni», an exhibition devoted to the Italian architect and designer Achille Castiglioni. The opening on November 10 will be accompanied by a lecture on Castiglioni’s work by his daughter Giovanna Castiglioni, the director of the Studio museum and Foundation of Achille Castiglioni in Milan.

Stories Editorial November 5, 2014

From 1954 until 1968, while working jointly with his brother Pier Giacomo Castiglioni, and after his sudden passing continuing the work on his own, Achille Castiglioni (1918–2002) has created over 150 design objects. During his enduring carrier, he has been awarded with nine prestigious «Compasso d’Oro» awards. Achille is one of the founders of Association for Design Industry (Associazione per il Disegno Industriale) and has been a professor at Polytechnic universities of Turin and Milan for two decades. 14 of Achilles design objects are exhibited at the most prominent art museums of the world.

The exhibition «Casa Castiglioni» for the first time in the Baltics will display all of the renowned Achille’s works — more than 30 award–winning design icons — furniture from «Zanotta», lighting objects from «Flos» and accessories from «Alessi» design factories. Witty, recognizable and functional items present the most powerful aspects of not only Castiglioni, but Italian design in general — the formal aesthetics that follow function and communicate with the user on both rational, and emotional level. One of the most exclusive objects exhibited at the show is the lamp «Arco» (1962) — a combination of the qualities of a floor lamp and a suspended lamp in one object, considered to be the first arch form floor luminary, as well as a lighting design revolution of the 60ies. The unusual «Mezzadro» chair (1957) demonstrates the designer’s ability to derive inspiration from everyday objects, as it combines a tractor seat, motor damper component and a wooden tread, creating a witty and daring solution of form. A fascinating design object is also the lamp «Toio» (1962), created from a headlight of a car, fishing line and an uncovered transformer, as well as the ironic chair «Sella» — a bicycle seat on a steel bar, fixed to a hemisphere.

The lecture of Giovanna Castiglioni will take place on November 10 at 16.30, followed by the opening of the «Casa Castiglioni» show. Within the framework of the exhibition, the students of Design department of Art Academy of Latvia are invited to take part in a competition by submitting sketches and models of their design ideas devoted to the work of Castiglioni. The entered works will be displayed at the «Casa Castiglioni» exhibition, the 10 best ideas will be materialised and put on show at the «Trentini» design gallery, but winner of the main prize will go on a creative trip to the «Zanotta» design factory in Italy. Submissions have to be entered until November 7; regulations can be found on the Academy’s homepage.

«Casa castiglioni» is organised in collaboration between the Art Academy of Latvia and the interior design gallery «Trentini». The exhibition is located in the ground floor hall, Kalpaka bulvāris 13, Riga. It is open on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 11.00 to 18.00, on Thursdays from 11.00 to 19.00, free of charge.