Italian furniture manufacturing giant Cassina, originally named Amedeo Cassina, was founded by brothers Cesare (1909-1979) and Umberto (1910-1992) Cassina in Meda, Italy in 1927. Although initially specialized in bespoke woodworking and high-end interiors, by the 1950s the brothers took the company in a new direction, anticipating the growing demand for mass-produced home furnishings. Cassina is often credited with introducing industrial design to Italy and has built an international reputation for collaborating with some of the world’s most respected designers.
Notably, in 1964 (while famed architect Le Corbusier was still alive), Cassina signed the first exclusive licensing agreement covering the edition rights for designs by Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret, and Charlotte Perriand. The company soon after launched the I Maestri Collection which over the decades has gathered major icons of design under the Cassina brand, such as the LC4 Lounge (1928) jointly designed by Le Corbusier, Jeanneret, and Perriand, as well as Dutch architect Gerrit Rietveld’s 635 Red & Blue Armchair (1918), Scottish architect-designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Hill House Chair (1902), and many more.
With a focus more on partnering with the best designers rather than creating and maintaining a particular style, Cassina is responsible for some of the most recognized and beloved designs of the 20th and 21st centuries. Highlights include Italian architect-designer Gio Ponti’s Superleggera Chair (1957), German designer Konstantin Grcic’s Kanu Chair (2009), Iranian-British architect Zaha Hadid’s Zephyr Sofa (2013), and French designer Philippe Starck’s My World Sofa (2013). Throughout its visionary collaborations with both design luminaries and cutting-edge experiments with new talents, Cassina has remained dedicated to the Italian design ideals of craftsmanship and quality, and the brand continues to excel in the fusion of industrial technology and artisanal production.
Cassina’s designs are included in permanent collections the world over, such as the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Vitra Design Museum (Weil am Rhein) and London Design Museum.
Cassina is now a part of the prestigious Poltrona Frau Group.
* All images courtesy of Cassina.