How do you choose furniture and pieces of art of a house?

The advice of a famous architect: Gio Ponti

We expect from Gio Ponti, and actually in the majority of his scripts he does it, the suggestion of a completely modern furnishing style. Having planned from the piece of silver cutlery to the skyscraper, we could expect a “all-new”. Instead, in a wonderful collection of articles from the title Gio Ponti e il “Corriere della Sera” 1930-1963 curated by Luca Molinari and Cecilia Rostagni, Gio Ponti shows his education, his cultural depth and his many faces. He appears as a designer and an expert in designing techniques but also in the manufacturing of the materials, he appears as an enlightened thinker and giver of futuristic ideas, of great relevance and feasibility still today. Therefore, considering our words redundant, we are going to report those of the great master, published in an article that appeared on the Corriere della Sera on the 19th of September 1951 with the title “A capricious choice is never of good taste”: “[…] many believe it indispensable to decorate the house having paintings and objects, and in order to have them they do not care about their quality and characteristics. Nothing, instead, is less indispensable: paintings and objects, in the house, only have a justification in the taste and culture, and no necessity of presence or number. […] But which one is the safe and enjoyable way to reach such a “Climate”? That of the collection, which is the noble way of a choice dictated by love, knowledge and culture. […] Collect modern and antique things. Truly modern environments, which are about the current culture, must host modern and antique pieces and objects, because everything is simultaneous in our culture and sensitivity. […] To our civilization must pertain, simultaneously enjoyable, antique furniture and objects and modern furniture and objects. […] therefore, do not buy, randomly, “some paintings”, but – after a willing cultural update – choose “your authors”, the ones you feel like loving. And if you buy some art objects choose them with one intention: an intention of sympathy for the genre, or for the material, or for the technique, or for the author. […] An update is to be desired, a spread and critical cognition in regard not only of the styles of the architecture and furniture, but also of the style, technique, material, genre and epoch of the art objects and their authors (ceramics, porcelains, Gres, blown glass, crystals, varnishes, plastics, embroideries, etc.).”

 Surprisingly, the invitation of a modern architect is thus the one of weaving together and making modern art and furniture live together with the things of the past and it is exactly the capacity of making them coexist the extraordinary sign of culture. We relied on the words of Gio Ponti to invite to a conscious collecting of antique and modern art with preparation or, without committing a sin of modesty, relying on the experience of ANTICHITA’ GIGLIO!!….in choosing antique furniture and paintings so as modern pieces and design.  

Bibliography: Gio Ponti e il “Corriere della Sera” 1930-1963, ac L. Molinari e C. Rostagni, Milan 2011

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