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Alessi is one of those companies which embodies a typical phenomenon of Italian industrial culture, namely that of “Italian Design Factories”. In 1921 started the history of Alessi, an Italian Design Factory that has created many masterpieces of Italian design conceived by more than two hundred of the most talented designers from all over the World. Each of these objects, as a part of Italian design history, has brought into our catalogue an expression of the native original culture of their designers. Indeed, this skill to give birth to authentic expressions of so many different national cultures is the main characteristic of Italian design today.
Since 1921 the most significant part of our production has specialized in cold working metals, and still today is made in Italy by our skillful workers. During the last decades we have also worked with several other materials such as porcelain, glass, wood and plastics. For each of these materials we have settled a different production solution. Even when production takes place outside our factory, our guidelines guarantee the same standard of quality of our original production in metal: half-way between the technological complexity of industry and the attention to details of handicraft. Objects made with these new materials are today produced at different production locations around the world, yet being wholly original Alessi objects: conceived with the same excellence in design, produced with the same care for quality and characterized by that particular mix of eccentricity and style, ludicity and culture, irony and elegance that make all of our products unique.
When speaking about the "Italian Design factories" I am referring to a historical group of companies for whom design is-f I may use a somewhat exaggerated term - a Mission, an activity which has gradually broken away from its original meaning as a simple formal project for an object and has become a sort of "overall philosophy", a "Weltanschauung", underlying all of these companies' operational steps: we believe that our true nature comes closer to a "Research Lab in the Applied Arts" than to an industry in the traditional sense of the term. Research Lab in the Applied Arts, the role of which is to mediate continually between the most advanced and stimulating expressions of international creative culture on the one hand, and the public's requirements and dreams on the other. A lab that should be as open and dedicated to the world of Creation as possible.
"The right type of contribution that an industry such as Alessi can make to the civilised development of the consumer society is to be an artistic mediator, attempting to create new objects, introducing a touch of transcendency, helping us decipher our own modernity." - Alberto Alessi