Cleto Munari Launches New Furnishings Collection in Collaboration with Architects, Artists and Poets

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Italian design impresario Cleto Munari has launched his first Furnishings Collection, in collaboration with nine international architects, poets and artists. Munari has selected world renowned architects, and visual and literary artists to work in complete freedom without the limitations of market or production constraints. The limited edition Furnishings Collection is comprised of tables, cabinets, seating, and rugs and is currently on exhibit in New York.

My story is a simple one, of friendship with those who have shared my love of art, design poetry, of working and "making" things in these fascinating, ineffable fields.

Design impresario Cleto Munari has launched his first Furnishings Collection, in collaboration with nine international architects, poets and artists. Starting with Italian architect Carlo Scarpa in the seventies, Munari has orchestrated collections of sterling silver tableware, jewelry, Murano glass, watches, pens, and now limited edition tables, cabinets, seating and rugs. Munari has selected world renowned architects, and visual and literary artists to work in complete freedom without the limitations of market or production constraints. The participants create functional art that reflects their personal design motifs, from the "graphic doilies" of Alessandro Mendini to angled swords that slice the surface of Mimmo Paladino's table. Each piece in the Furnishings Collection is produced in a signed limited edition of 9,99 or 999.

For the first time Munari has collaborated with poets. Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Mark Strand created tables for the collection using language and their own graphic images. Architects Alessandro Mendini, Marcello Morandini, Mario Botta, Giorgio Cattano, and Alessandro Munari participated, each enlivening their pieces with expressive linear designs. Artists Mimmo Paladino and Sandro Chia have approached their tables, cabinets, mirrors, and rugs with a more painterly approach. In tribute to Venice, Cleto Munari's table is called Palafitte. The Memphis-inspired cylindrical legs represent the petrified pilings of wood on which Venice is built. Munari has been invited to exhibit the table in the 2011 Venice Biennale which opens in June.

Munari's friendships with Scarpa, Mendini and Ettore Sottsass inspire his explorations, "My story is a simple one, of friendship with those who have shared my love of art, design poetry, of working and 'making' things in these fascinating, ineffable fields." It has always been Munari's ambition to work with people that "did not belong to the well-defined and limited world of design." It is for this reason he invites poets and artists to join with architects to create what he considers "an ideal of beauty."

The Furnishing Collection is being exhibited through 2011 in New York at the GD Cucine Showroom at 227 West 17th Street.

The entire Furnishings Collection can be viewed at http://www.cletomunari.com.

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