George Sowden

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Memphis
Research, Experiences, Results, Failures and Successes of New Design


First 1984 printing of the US hardcover edition of “MEMPHIS: Research, Experiences, Results, Failures and Successes of New Design”, by Barbara Radice – arguably the greatest reference book on the work of the Italian Design group MEMPHIS. In original dust-jacket.

Written by Radice, a founding member of the Memphis group (and author of “Ettore Sottsass: A Critical Biography”), and documenting in stunning photography and reproduction the vast array of design work that this group produced across furniture, lighting, interiors, architecture, textiles, glassware, etc., this really feels like THE official Memphis book, embodying their spirit and design aesthetic in book form.

Founded in 1981, the international group of architects and designers, Memphis, shook the design world to its foundations. Based in Italy and led by Ettore Sottsass, it overturned and re-shaped the pre-suppositions on which the production of so-called Modern Design is based. It became the almost mythical symbol of the New Design. Laughing out loud at our culture and at itself, Memphis pulled out all stops when it came to colour, pattern, decoration and ornamentation. It sets out to contribute to the continuing dialogue on pop culture, the avant-garde and design.

This book features the work of Ettore Sottsass, George Sowden, Masanori Umeda, Shiro Kuramata, Nathalie Du Pasquier, Peter Shire, Michele de Lucchi, Matteo Thun, Alessandro Mendini, Andrea Branzi, Gerard Taylor, Michael Graves, Aldo Cibic, George James Sowden, Arquitectonica, Hans Hollein, Marco Zanini, Javier Mariscal, Thomas Bley, Martine Bedin, etc.

Contents are: Introduction; Memphis; Plastic Laminate; Materials; Decoration; Color; The Memphis Idea; The Design; Memphis and Fashion.

Highly recommended.

* Condition: Very Good-Fine (tight, clean copy in dust jacket protected under plastic) – All care is taken to provide accurate condition details of used books, photos available on request.

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Memphis
Research, Experiences, Results, Failures and Successes of New Design

Softcover English edition of “MEMPHIS: Research, Experiences, Results, Failures and Successes of New Design”, by Barbara Radice – arguably the greatest reference book on the work of the Italian Design group MEMPHIS.

Written by Radice, a founding member of the Memphis group (and author of “Ettore Sottsass: A Critical Biography”), and documenting in stunning photography and reproduction the vast array of design work that this group produced across furniture, lighting, interiors, architecture, textiles, glassware, etc., this feels almost like THE official Memphis book, embodying their spirit and design aesthetic in book form.

Founded in 1981, the international group of architects and designers, Memphis, shook the design world to its foundations. Based in Italy and led by Ettore Sottsass, it overturned and re-shaped the pre-suppositions on which the production of so-called Modern Design is based. It became the almost mythical symbol of the New Design. Laughing out loud at our culture and at itself, Memphis pulled out all stops when it came to colour, pattern, decoration and ornamentation. It sets out to contribute to the continuing dialogue on pop culture, the avant-garde and design.

This book features the work of Ettore Sottsass, George Sowden, Masanori Umeda, Shiro Kuramata, Nathalie Du Pasquier, Peter Shire, Michele de Lucchi, Matteo Thun, Alessandro Mendini, Andrea Branzi, Gerard Taylor, Michael Graves, Aldo Cibic, George James Sowden, Arquitectonica, Hans Hollein, Marco Zanini, Javier Mariscal, Thomas Bley, Martine Bedin, etc.

Contents are: Introduction; Memphis; Plastic Laminate; Materials; Decoration; Color; The Memphis Idea; The Design; Memphis and Fashion.

Highly recommended.

* Condition: Very Good (general sun tanning to spine and edges, and light wear, creasing, otherwise tight, clean copy) – All care is taken to provide accurate condition details of used books, photos available on request.

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Nathalie Du Pasquier
Don’t Take These Drawings Seriously


Nathalie Du Pasquier started drawing as soon as she met her husband George Sowden in 1979 in Milan. She was introduced to the world of design and shortly after, in 1981, became a founding member of the iconic postmodern design movement Memphis. From 1981 to 1987 she didn’t stop drawing. Every day she would draw a whole new modern world, from very small items like jewelry to entire cities. This world only existed in her head but would eventually be developed into real pieces for the Memphis exhibitions.

This unique book is the first and definitive compilation of all the unpublished drawings from those years, which had been sitting in the drawers of Nathalie’s studio for over 30 years. Organized by the smallest objects to the biggest and divided into chapters, each with a text by Nathalie, it has been carefully edited and designed by Apartamento magazine’s co-founder Omar Sosa together with Nathalie Du Pasquier.

Don’t Take These Drawings Seriously is an excellent reference for future generations and a welcome document of an important period in modern design.

 

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Objects for the Electronic Age
Nathalie du Pasquier and George Sowden, ARC 74

Very scarce catalogue from 1983 from Italian manfacturer ARC 74.
This catalogue showcases the series Objects for an Electronic Age, initiated and designed by George Sowden and Nathalie du Pasquier in 1983. The premise of the series was to mark the transition between mechanically and electronically based designs. The key argument of Sowden and du Pasquier was: ‘electronic age objects will be anything’. Sowden claimed: ‘If mechanical design is about function, then electronic objects will be about decoration’. According to Sowden and du Pasquier mechanical devices have shapes that must be housed in an exterior shell while an electronic device can become any shape. Both made 12 objects for the series.  These objects included clocks, lamps and fruit bowls (some of which are now housed in the V&A collection).

Du Pasquier and Sowden met in Milan at the inception of the Memphis design group of which they were both core founding members, and subsequently married. The series showcased in this catalogue, Objects for an Electronic Age, was the couples own project for Italian manufacturer ARC 74.  The series employs many distinctive features pioneered by the Memphis group: the use of plastic laminate and painted steel to create a colourful, patterned surface, the use of ornament, and a departure from obvious functionality in favour of a vivid sculptural form. The micro-architectural composition is reminiscent of this group of associated designers in Italy, surrounding Memphis, Studio Alchimia, etc.

This beautifully designed and printed catalogue also comes with an original invitation to the exhibition launch of Objects for an Electronic Age at the ARC 74 design showroom in Milan.  The invitation features an illustration by Nathalie du Pasquier (not pictured).

* Condition: Very good, clean copy – All care is taken to provide accurate condition details of used books, photos available on request.

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Objects for the Electronic Age - Arc 74, Italy, 1983
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