Natuzzi’s new furniture exudes Mediterranean attitude
Part of Natuzzi’s ‘Circle of Harmony’ creative series, its new furniture collections feature pieces by Sabine Marcelis, Formafantasma, Marcel Wanders Studio, Patrick Norguet and more
Natuzzi presents the latest chapter in its ongoing creative renaissance as it unveils new furniture collections by international designers at Salone del Mobile 2021. Founded in Italy’s Puglia in 1959, the brand’s creative direction is now in the hands of second-generation Pasquale Natuzzi Junior (known as PJ), whose high-profile collaborations have firmly established Natuzzi as a design-led company.
PJ Natuzzi’s direction has already seen the brand collaborate with Fabio Novembre and Marcel Wanders Studio, a move that, he notes, gave Natuzzi ‘a boost of creative contamination that intrigued the design community’. An example of his approach’s success is the 2020 collaboration with Nika Zupanc, a designer whom PJ introduced into the company and whose piece became a Natuzzi best-seller. ‘That felt like a victory, the emblem of what I see as creative contamination,’ says PJ.
When he joined the company, the ‘perceived Natuzzi look’ was masculine, mature and commercial. ‘To evolve the brand, it was crucial to introduce different DNAs into the company, fuse them with our creative blood to create a winning blend.’
The circle of harmony: Natuzzi’s new furniture collections
The latest iteration of these collaborations is the ‘Circle of Harmony’ concept, inviting an eclectic group of designers to create new furniture collections with Natuzzi. It’s a concept, PJ says, that makes his creative vision official. For 2021, collaborators include Formafantasma, Sabine Marcelis, Marco Piva, Massimo Iosa Ghini, Patrick Norguet, Lorenza Bozzoli, Marcel Wanders Studio and Elena Salmistraro. Different approaches, generations and styles merge into a collection that explores Natuzzi’s DNA in an imaginative way. PJ loves to gather designers around a table and see their creative thinking come together over a glass of wine.
Working with Sabine Marcelis and Formafantasma was particularly interesting for Natuzzi: two design studios who had never before approached a sofa project. ‘It was a matter of combining their respective strong creative visions with Natuzzi’s,’ says PJ.
Formafantasma created the ‘Apulo’ collection, a sofa imagined for remote working whose rigorous forms were inspired by the vernacular architecture of the southern Italian countryside and merged well with Natuzzi’s comfort-focused approach. Meanwhile, Sabine Marcelis’ monolithic ‘Block’ sofa on wheels merges material, colour and forms unexpectedly, distilled into the Natuzzi language and resulting in an extremely balanced design.
For PJ, the collection as a whole represents a kaleidoscope of the Mediterranean lifestyle, something that has been at the core of his direction for the brand and an integral part of its DNA from the start. ‘Mediterranean means inclusivity and cultural diversity, so the idea of blending different design experiences and ideas, and mixing them with our sense of hospitality, is a very Mediterranean approach.’ §