Italian furniture manufacturer Skipper & Pollux specialized in the production of stylish tables, desks, sideboards, chairs, and lighting fixtures. Although the circumstances surrounding the company’s inception is somewhat lost to history, Skipper’s surviving portfolio—especially 1970s and ’80s collaborations with designers Bruno Gecchelin, Claudio Sallochi, Hans von Klier, and, most saliently, Angelo Mangiarotti—has been rediscovered and reappraised on the vintage market. Skipper remains beloved for gracefully blending modernist principles with an early, sculptural, almost Deco-esque step toward postmodern design.
Gecchelin, in particular, was the most prolific contributor to Skipper’s lighting output. Concurrent to stints designing for Italy’s most progressive lighting manufacturers—Guzzini, Oluce, Venini, and Gino Sarfatti’s Arteluce—Gecchelin produced an array of minimalist lamps (table, wall, floor, desk, ceiling) for the company, often crafted in premium materials like marble and lacquered metal. A specific standout Skipper design includes Gecchelin’s Mezzeluna (1975), a high-voltage and quite tall floor lamp in Cararra marble and white lacquered metal. Beyond Gecchelin, Skipper’s lighting portfolio includes work from Claudio Sallochi, whose Riflessione Floor Lamp (ca. 1960s) was manufactured by the company in the 1970s and is now fetching high valuations on the vintage market.
On the furniture side, Angelo Mangiarotti designed Skipper’s most revered and enduring pieces. Mangiarotti’s portfolio spans Artemide, Bernini, Cappellini, and Knoll, and his highly sculptural designs—like those of his contemporaries Tobia and Afra Scarpa, Cini Boeri, Gae Aulenti, and Mario Botta—bridged the modern and postmodern design waves in Italy. In 1970, Mangiarotti designed the first of his iconic, marble-crafted Eros Tables, which feature a rounded surface interlocked via gravity atop a conical pedestal.
Later Skipper standouts include Mangiarotti’s beloved Incas Table (1978), Estral Shelving System (1981), Chicago Chair (1983), and Central Table (1985), among others. Many of these designs are available in newer iterations through Agape Casa, which, since 2010, has owned the license to reproduce Mangiarotti’s work.