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Tecno-Osvaldo-Fulgenzio-Context Gallery
c.1953, Designer Osvaldo Borsani, founder of Tecno, with Fulgen­zio Borsani, admin­is­tra­tor of the company.

Tecno

Italy (1953)

Perhaps no one is as vital to the contem­po­rary Italian design as Tecno, founded in 1953 by broth­ers Osvaldo and Fulgen­zio Borsani as a way to bring their father’s artisan work­shop into the age of indus­trial manu­fac­tur­ing. Tecno first exhib­ited its mass produced but utterly unique furni­ture within a Buck­min­ster Fuller geodesic dome at the 10th Milan Trien­nial Exhi­bi­tion, includ­ing its soon-to-be smash D70 divan. Osvaldo’s sense of harmo­nious restraint, and Fulgenzio’s keen eye for busi­ness, went on to estab­lish new design stan­dards like the Graphis office system, which in large part created the open-plan workplace. 

Osvaldo’s daugh­ter Valeria entered the fold in the mid-1960s with her D120 sofa, boast­ing steel columns for feet that rest unex­pect­edly on off-center circles. In the 1980s, Tecno collab­o­rated with Norman Foster on Nomos, a desk that won the pres­ti­gious Compass d’Oro award. While Tecno found huge success in furni­ture for work­places, by the 1990s they were ventur­ing into the realm of fine art, with collab­o­ra­tions and trib­utes to artists like Lucio Fontana and Man Ray. By the turn of the century, Tecno had offices through­out Europe and from New York to Seoul and Dubai, and had joined corpo­rate forces with brands like Zanotta. Most recently, they’ve returned to to their roots in Italy with a new collab­o­ra­tion with Norman Foster for the major project of design­ing a Vatican chapel. Context Gallery has been a trusted partner with Tecno for over a decade.

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