ZANOTTA : object
(w/ Sottsass Associati, 1993-94)
Problem: Zanotta, one of the leading manufacturers of high-end Italian furniture, wanted to expand and update its table category. They saw an opportunity to increase market share in the segment, but wanted to do so while reducing production costs.
Solution: By applying design to “humble” materials, a collection rich in design quality was created. In partnership with ABET Laminati, a low-cost process for creating custom designed laminates was developed, in order to provide Zanotta with durable, yet aesthetically rich table tops. Various options were explored for supporting the tops: inexpensive wood turnings, glazed ceramics, cast iron and RIM plastics. In all, 28 designs were created in a number of table typologies: dining, coffee, side, café, stacking, entryway.
Impact: The collection gave Zanotta access to new markets, especially in the commercial realm. The laminates ensured the tops would stand up to rigorous use. The legs, if ever damaged, could be easily and quickly switched out. As a result, the designs were selected by Autogrill for use in all of its highway reststops throughout Italy.