Corso Italia: Italian Design at the ICFF

In the past few years, Italian designers and manufacturers have grouped together to present their products at the ICFF. This year the companies subtly set themselves apart from the rest of the show by setting up their booths between two scrimmed walls. The result was the ICFF equivalent of Little Italy.

Represented along these subdued and elegant aisles was Fontana Arte, a company founded in 1932 by Gio Ponti. The firm represents many well-known designers and products, but it seems nothing is so wonderful as Fontana Arte’s light fixtures.

Unusual and contemporary pieces are Moroso’s stock-in-trade. This year’s molded plastic chairs in vivid colors caught your eye and made you wonder where you could use them in your own dwelling.

MDF Italia also went for plastic, this time in low-slung, slouchy chairs perched on metal legs. The chairs, with their cut-away sides and back, are surprisingly comfortable and simple.

Matteograssi is known for their soft leathers and coach hide. This year there were simple white couches that looked like upholstered benches, with flanking black chairs. In fact, it seemed everything in this Little Italy was in black and white, with a few vibrant accent colors to shake things up.

Poltrona Frau, R-S-V-P, Luceplan, and Flou, were just a few of the other Italian companies that lent their luminous, well-crafted, finely designed presence to the show.

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