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Foscarini and the ADI Compasso d’Oro

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The Compasso d’Oro Award is the oldest and most authoritative design award in the world. Established in 1954, at the suggestion of Gio Ponti, it aims to highlight the value and quality of Italian design products.

Since 1958, ADI – the Italian Industrial Design Association – has been responsible for organising it, guaranteeing its impartiality and integrity – assigning it on the basis of a pre-selection made by a panel of experts, designers, critics, historians and journalists – with the aim of promoting and recognising the quality and innovation of Italian research, material culture and design.

All the awarded objects are part of the Historical Collection of the ADI Compasso d’Oro Award, declared by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage as a national asset “of exceptional artistic and historical interest”.

Over the years, Foscarini has been selected several times by the Permanent Design Observatory – the ADI organisation which, thanks to panels of experts, evaluates Italian production in the various commodities categories – obtaining two Compassi d’Oro and seven Menzioni d’Onore (Honourable Mentions), to testify to the brand’s constant commitment to research, in the proposal of new shapes and meanings, not only in the product, but also in the way it tells its story.

2001: The Compasso d’Oro award goes to Mite and Tite

Discover Mite and Tite

Resulting from more than two years of research, the Mite floor lamp has been produced since 2000. Designed by Marc Sadler, it uses a circular diffuser that is 185 cm high, whose shape widens towards the top, made of glass fabric with a carbon thread wound around it for the black version, or made of Kevlar® for the yellow version.
Research on the material started with the exploration of the possible technologies used in rowing, which is based on the winding of threads around a solid body. This technology is normally used to make fishing rods and oars for competition boats, and has already been used by Marc Sadler to make golf clubs. Foscarini is the absolute first brand to have applied this technique to the lighting sector and has patented its invention. The glass fabric is cut like a garment, wrapped around a mould with a polymerised resin and the thread and subsequently baked in a furnace. This way, the thread creates an original decoration and endows the material with strong characteristics of flexibility and solidity, lightness and hard-wearing resistance and the structure is at the same time a load-bearing and illuminating body.
By bestowing the award to Mite and to the Tite suspension, the jury of the Compasso d’oro-ADI 2001 motivated this decision as follows:

“Technological innovation in the use of a purpose-designed material, easy maintenance and cleaning, lightness and conformation characterise an object of the utmost simplicity and understated design for aesthetic expression in the functional response”.

The Mite and Tite lamps are kept at the ADI Design Museum in Milan and are included in the design collection of the Centre Pompidou in Paris.

2011: Menzione d’onore (Honourable Mention) for the “Infinity” installation

Infinity – a gigantic kaleidoscope designed by Vicente Garcia Jimenez that endlessly multiplied images of the Foscarini collection – welcomed and mesmerised visitors to the Fuorisalone 2009 collateral event, in the premises of Superstudio Più in Milan, involving them in an extraordinary multi-sensory experience made of choreographies of light, with videos by Massimo Gardone and original music by Francesco Morosini. The installation was selected in the ADI Design Index 2010 and awarded in 2011 with a Menzione d’Onore (Honourable Mention) on the occasion of the 22nd Compasso d’Oro, in recognition of Foscarini’s highly innovative communication.

2014: The Compasso d’Oro award goes to the Inventario publishing project

Discover Inventario

A mix between a book and a magazine, Inventario is an editorial project directed by Beppe Finessi, which is sponsored and supported by Foscarini, that explores the best productions of international creativity through a tale of design from a multitude of points of views.
Inventory sheds an enlightened and free light on the design, architecture and art scene. This unique and unmistakable approach has been recognised and rewarded with the ADI Compasso d’Oro in its 13th edition, with this motivation from the jury: “for the ability to summarise culturally elevated topics with lightness, illustrating them with a strong visual identity and quality of the publishing product”.
With the artistic direction of Artemio Croatto/Designwork, edited by Corraini Edizioni, Inventario is available in the best book-shops and bookstores all over the world and can also be purchased on-line.

“Inventario is not about Foscarini because we wanted to come up with a project which was entirely unconstrained and thus completely credible in its freedom of choice. Inventario does however act as the spokesperson for our values, looking ahead attentively and curiously and with the pleasure of experiencing the lands of innovation, in true Foscarini spirit”.

/ chairman of Foscarini

2014: A deluge of Acknowledgements

The commitment and innovative ability of Foscarini, an experimental and creative laboratory working under the banner of excellence, were acknowledged in the 2014 edition of the Compasso d’Oro with a multitude of accolades. In addition to the Compasso d’Oro awarded to Inventario, on the occasion of the 13th edition of the prestigious award, Foscarini received Menzioni d’Onore (Honourable Mentions) for the Aplomb products (design: Lucidi and Pevere), Behive (design: Werner Aisslinger), Binic (design: Ionna Vautrin), Colibrì (design: Odoardo Fioravanti) and Magneto (design: Giulio Iacchetti).

2020: Menzione d’Onore (Honourable Mention) for Satellight

Discover Satellight

The international jury of the 26th edition of the ADI Compasso d’Oro Award awarded the lamp designed by Eugeni Quitllet the Menzione d’Onore (Honourable Mention). Significant is the innovative use of blown glass and plate glass that makes Satellight a simple object of immense appeal, but also one that is unprecedented and profound in its poetic lightness.
The lamp designed is distinguished by a suspended luminous orb, reminiscent of the moon in the night sky or a sphere of light held by a transparent and impalpable drape. The diffuser, thanks to its satin finish, appears like a textured presence suspended in mid-air, even when the lamp is switched off.

  • Aplomb
  • Awards
  • Behive
  • Binic
  • Colibrì
  • Inventario
  • Magneto
  • Mite
  • Sadler
  • Satellight

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