Gaetano Pesce & Pop Art design

Posted on December 8, 2013 by Toothpicker There have been 0 comments

gaetano pesce

ScreenTalk with Gaetano Pesce  and Peter Lang at Barbican


Lately, I have been extremely busy and so I haven't been doing much apart from working or attending business-related events. Finally, I was able to take some time off because a while ago I had booked to see "Italy - The New Domestic Landscape", MoMA 1972, organised by The Architecture Foundation and Barbican. The film is one of many selected to complement the Pop Art Design exhibition that is showing at the Barbican Art Gallery now.

I went to see the exhibition right before the screening, and although I am not a huge fan of Pop Art, I enjoyed the exhibition and learned more about the movement and its effects on even designs today. I probably would not have visited the exhibition if it was called 'Pop Art' but with the word 'design' at the end, it made a difference and I was intrigued.

The show features big names from the Pop Art scene like Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Peter Blake; and from the design scene: Charles and Ray EamesEttore Sottsass and Gaetano Pesce. The interesting aspect about the exhibition is that the work chosen really reflect the era and culture of that period. The idea of using one design but produced in different bright colours was popular at the time, yet nothing much has changed decades later ( thanks to Apple for reviving this trend). Aside from the playful and extravagant designer pieces, I was particularly happy to see Tupperware and photos of the 'cool' Tupperware party!


up Moloch Lamp

Left: Gaetano Pesce's Up armchair (1969); Right: Moloch lamp (1970)


"Italy - The New Domestic Landscape" is a collection of short films made specifically for the exhibition under the same title which was held at New York's Museum of Modern Art in 1972. The exhibition was divided into two areas, one under 'objects' and the other under 'environments'. Hence, the films developed by the Italian designers and architects were closely linked to the two topics. Some of them were very experimental/ avant garde and some with hidden political messages or black humour. The legendery Italian architect/ designer/ film and music-maker, Gaetano Pesce ( who is eccentric and humourous) was involved in this project, and so it was exciting to hear him talk about the project and his furniture design which is also on display at the Pop art design exhibition. Surprisingly, four decades on, the films are still compelling and original, it just shows the importance of Italian design culture and how deeply rooted it is in Italy. And even with new or emerging competitions from other countries, I still believe that Italian design will continue to stay as one of the forerunners in the world of design.

This post was posted in London, Exhibitions, Films & documentaries, Art, Italian design, Design and was tagged with London, short films, Italian design, Barbican