Essay by Paola Antonelli.
This new monograph documents the work of international master of design Achille Castiglioni. During his half-century career, Castiglioni has designed over 150 objects, including lamps, stools, bookshelves, electrical switches, cameras, telephones, vacuum cleaners and car seats. Many of his designs, like the Arco and Brera lamps, the Firenze wall clock, the RR 126 stereo system, and the Primate seat, achieve the highest standards of visual art as well as design, and several of his works are featured in the design collections of major museums. Taking as his motto ''Design demands observation,'' Castiglioni has created objects that are inspired by and respond to the demands of everyday life, basing some of his most famous designs on quotidian objects like a street lamps or a car's front reflector. His work is marked throughout by an attention both to the timeless essentials of great design and to the changing behavior and values of modern culture. This catalogue presents the highlights of Castiglioni's 50-year career in design in sumptuous reproductions, documenting an oeuvre that constitutes one of the highest expressions of contemporary creativity.