At first glance, anyone familiar with the work of Joe Colombo would be surprised by the Basket Collection. From a designer known for his futuristic style, his love of technology and his affinity for synthetic materials, a furniture collection in rattan seems like a significant departure from the norm. Look a little closer, however, and the hallmarks of classic Colombo become clear: organic lines, a distinctly modernist aesthetic, and a highly innovative approach to his chosen material.
The name ‘Basket’ honors the classic hand-weaving technique used in rattan basketry. The collection comprises a three-seater sofa, a two-seater sofa, and a lounge chair, all of which share the same construction. Replacing the inner fiberglass shell that Colombo initially utilized, the core of each piece is now formed from a more environmentally responsible steel skeleton, which provides strength and stability to the unique form. This is covered with a hand-woven rattan skin, made from interlaced strips and oval stakes, a technique that demands a tremendous degree of skill and craftsmanship to create.
Joe Colombo studied at the Polytechnic of Milan and the Brera Art Academy. After an important, albeit brief, escapade with informal painting, he decided to devote himself entirely to design and architecture. In 1954, he participated in an exhibition at the 10th Triennale, and in 1956 his first architectural project was completed in Milan, in via Rosolino Pilo.
A precursor of the study of ergonomic design, he developed unique products with a dynamic sculptural appearance.
Many of his objects are considered milestones of design and are part of the collections of the world’s most important museums, such as the MoMa and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.