U.F.O. Group


Never Ending Italian Design

The first edition of this great Alchimia book, edited by Kazuko Sato and published by Rikuyo-sha in Japan in 1985. The first European edition of this book appeared later in 1988.
Text in both English and Japanese.

This is truly THE book on the work of Studio Alchimia.  Published in Japan in 1985 and later in Germany in 1988 and lavishly illustrated throughout with colour photography and illustrations, this bilingual (English/German) volume features the history of Studio Alchimia, profiles of the Alchimia members (which included designers such as Andrea Branzi, Ettore Sottsass and Michele De Lucchi, amongst many others) a full work index and bibliography, and more.

Studio Alchimia was an iconoclastic, radical design group founded in Italy in 1976 by the Italian Architect Alessandro Guerriero.  The Studio Alchimia was composed of designers, whose aim was to design and manufacture exhibition pieces, rather than consumer orientated products. Their products were to be regarded as prototypes / one-offs, leading the way from the principles of modernist design to a bold, new, experimental design style.  This style would lead to the formation and popularity of Italian design groups in the 1980′s such as the Memphis Group and the new directions taken by the Alessi company.

Contents: Introduction by Alessandro Mendini. I). Alchimia. 1). Redesigned cupboards. 2). Bauhaus I – II. II). Exhibition. 1). A phenomenon of design. 2). Banal objects. 3). Natural objects. 4). Blackout. 5). House of Newlyweds. III). Pilosophical expression and activity. 1). Unfinished furniture. 2). Cosmesi. 3). Juliet’s house. 4). Carnival tower. 5). Bisexual architecture. 6). ‘Nulla’ – sounding garment. IV). Space design performance. 1). Furniture as clothing. 2). Mussolini’s bathroom. 3). Sentimental robot. 4). Midsummer night’s erotic dream. 5). Ambrogio’s house. 6). Momentary environment. 7). Kitchen space. V). Architecture and interior. 1). Utopia in a test-tube. 2). Tender architecture. 3). Alchimia town. 4). Summer architecture. 5). An idea for the house. 6). House of falsity. 7). Café de Paris. 8). Colosseum/bank in Alcamo. 9). Mysterious bathing. 10). New bridge of Accademia. 11). Thodier house. 12). Alessi house. VI). Redesigning the Modern Movement. VII). New design. 1). Nuova Alchimia. 2). 1930s furniture. 3). Poetic objects. 4). Philosophical cupboards. 5). Monumental objects. 6). Timeless objects. 7). Human-life objects. 8). Architectural fashion. 9). Textile patterns. 10). The present age – the designer in the cage. 11). Design research on bicycles. VIII). Alchimia and industry. 1). ‘Sans souci’ tableware. 2). Product research on Neapolitan coffee-pots. 3). Post-modern designs. 4). Programme No. 6. 5). ‘Renault super 5′ decoration. 6). Domus. 7). Invention of a neutral surface. IX). Radical design. 1). The Forence group and Casabella. 2). Products of the Non-project period. 3). The Post-radicals.

First Japanese edition, hardcover, 1985.

* Condition: Fine (fine book and dust jacket, protected in plastic wrap)  – All care is taken to provide accurate condition details of used books, photos available on request.

Alchimia (1985, Japan)
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