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Tecno Design Center. From the “participative” spirit of the sixties to the “global” design of the new millennium

“The discreet elegance of technique” is the expression dedicated by Giampiero Bosoni (2011) to the historic Tecno Company, founded by Osvaldo and Fulgenzio Borsani in 1953 in Varedo (MI). The introduction of the technological factor into the aesthetic and typological development of furniture became the founding principle of the company, where the deus ex machina of the design vision was Osvaldo Borsani. Though since they first founded the company, the Borsani brothers made significant efforts to work with independent designers, they still viewed the designer as an in-house member of the creative “workshop”, a legacy of their experience with ABV (Arredamenti Borsani Varedo). In the late sixties, architects Valeria Borsani and Marco Fantoni suggested that Osvaldo Borsani end the cycle of designer names on pieces developed within the company and to formalize what was already de facto the Tecno Design Center (CTP), which was officially instituted in 1970.

This article presents a study devoted specifically to the CPT, leaving the well-documented history of Tecno to the wealth of dedicated literature (Gramigna & Irace, 1992; Colonetti, 1996; Bosoni, 2011), in an attempt to reconstruct its thirty-year history and to describe the system of professional interrelationships relying on bibliographical documents, materials from the archives and interviews.

The full version of this article is available only in Italian

Questo articolo è stato pubblicato in AIS/Design Storia e Ricerche, numero 7 maggio 2016

Chiara Lecce

Chiara Lecce received her MA in Interior Design (2008) and her PhD in Interior Architecture & Exhibition Design (2013; with the thesis: “Living Interiors in the Digital Age: the Smart Home”) from the Politecnico di Milano. Since 2008 she has been engaged in teaching activities, in History of Design classes and Interior Design studio, at the Design School of the Politecnico di Milano, collaborating with professors Giampiero Bosoni and Ico Migliore. Since 2013 she has been managing editor of the scientific journal PAD (Pages on Arts and Design) and member of AIS/Design (Italian Association of Design Historians). She is the author of several articles featured in various design journals. She is currently research fellow and lecturer at the Design Department of the Politecnico di Milano, with a focus on exhibition design history and methodologies. In 2016 she was a tutor within the H2020 European project “Design for Enterprises”. Since 2009 she has been collaborating with the Franco Albini Foundation and with other Italian design archives, while continuing to work as a freelance interior designer.

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