Artists list

Michele De Lucchi

Foto personale di Michele De Lucchi

Michele De Lucchi was born in Ferrara in 1951. He graduated in Architecture at the University of Florence. Throughout the years of radical and avant-garde architecture he was a prominent figure in movements like Cavart, Alchimia and Memphis.
He designed lamps and furniture for the most important Italian and European companies, such as Artemide, Olivetti, Alias, Unifor, Hermès, Alessi.
He designed working environments and corporate identity places for Deutsche Bank, Poste Italiane, Ferrovie dello Stato, Enel, Piaggio, Olivetti, Telecom Italia, Novartis, Intesa Sanpaolo, Unicredit. He realized architectural projects in Italy and worldwide, that include residential, industrial, corporate and cultural buildings. He also curated exhibitions for the Triennale di Milano, Palazzo delle Esposizioni di Roma, the Neues Museum Berlin, the Gallerie d'Italia in Piazza Scala and Museo Pietà Rondanini in Milan. He has recently realized a number of projects for the city of Milan: the pavilions for Expo 2015 (Padiglione Zero, Expo Center, Intesa Sanpaolo) and UniCredit Pavilion in piazza Gae Aulenti. In 1990 he founded Produzione Privata, a little small-scale production and retail company through which Michele De Lucchi designs products that are made using dedicated artisans and craft techniques. Since 2004 he sculpts wooden "cots" using the chainsaw, in order to find architectural simplicity.
In 2003 the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris has acquired a considerable number of his works. Selections of his products are exhibited in the most important design Museums in Europe, United States and Japan. In 2000 he was appointed Officer of Italian Republic by President Ciampi, for services to design and architecture. In 2001 he has been nominated Professor at the Design and Art Faculty at the University in Venice. In 2006 he received the Honorary Doctorate from Kingston University, for his contribution to "living quality". In 2008 he has been nominated Professor at the Design Faculty of the Politecnico of Milan and Member of the Accademia Nazionale di San Luca in Rome. He lives and works between Angera and Milan.

International museums collections:

  • Design Museum, Ghent (Belgio)
  • Musée des Arts Dècoratifs de Montréal, Québec (Canada)
  • Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal, Québec (Canada)
  • Designmuseo, Helsinki (Finlandia)
  • Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (Francia)
  • Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg (Germania)
  • Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein (Germania)
  • Museum of Design, Thessaloniki, Macedonia (Grecia)
  • The Israel Museum, Jerusalem (Israele)
  • Accademia Nazionale di San Luca, Roma (Italia)
  • Civica Galleria d'Arte Moderna-Sezione Design, Gallarate (Italia)
  • Centro Legno Arredo Cantù, Collezione Storica del Premio Compasso d'Oro ADI, Cantù (Italia)
  • Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Roma (Italia)
  • Museo Alessi, Omegna (Italia)
  • Museo Kartell, Milano (Italia)
  • Museo Nazionale della Scienza e della Tecnica Leonardo da Vinci, Milano (Italia)
  • Triennale di Milano-Collezione Permanente del Design Italiano, Milano (Italia)
  • Triennale Design Museum, Milano (Italia)
  • Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (Olanda)
  • Groninger Museum, Groningen (Olanda)
  • Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Amsterdam (Olanda)
  • The National Museum, Poznan (Polonia)
  • Museum für Gestaltung, Zurich (Svizzera)
  • Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, California (USA)

Main exhibitions:

  • 2015 » Baracche, Antonia Jannone Disegni di Architettura, Milano (Italia)
  • 2015 » A&W, Designer des Jahres, Colonia (Germania)
  • 2014 » Edifici vuoti. Sculture, disegni e incisioni, Galleria Corraini, Mantova (Italia)
  • 2013 » Montagne, Antonia Jannone Disegni di Architettura, Milano (Italia)
  • 2012 » Colonne portanti, Fondazione Volume!, Roma (Italia)
  • 2012 » I miei orribili e meravigliosi clienti, Fiera del Levante, Bari (Italia)
  • 2012 » Tavolini, Antonia Jannone Disegni di Architettura, Milan (Italia)
  • 2011 » Michele De Lucchi. Modelli in legno di edifici, Museo del Legno, Cantù (Italia)
  • 2011 » Le torri dell'aria, Basilica Palladiana, Vicenza (Italia)
  • 2011 » Independent. Design secession, Triennale Bovisa, Milano (Italia)
  • 2011 » Calma e quiete. Progetti subliminali di Alessandro Mendini, Michele De Lucchi, Angelo Micheli, Palazzo Fava, Bologna (Italia)
  • 2010 » Costruzioni della terra e dell'acqua. Modelli in legno di Michele De Lucchi, Pinacoteca comunale "Cesare Belossi" presso Villa Soranzo, Varallo Pombia (Italia)
  • 2010 » Michele De Lucchi – Ottorino De Lucchi. Uguale e differente. Design et peinture, Musée des Arts décoratifs, Bordeaux (Francia)
  • 2010 » Michele De Lucchi. Filip Dujardin. Vero falso verosimile, Casabella Laboratorio, Milano (Italia)
  • 2010 » Michele De Lucchi. A pioner between handicraft and industry, The Gallery, Bruxelles (Belgio)
  • 2010 » Michele De Lucchi e Produzione Privata, Museum Van Loon, Amsterdam (Olanda)
  • 2010 » Michele AND De Lucchi, Accademia di Belle Arti, Aula Minerva, Firenze (Italia)
  • 2010 » Michele De Lucchi: Architekturchen, Showroom Ingo Maurer, Kaiserstrasse 47, Monaco (Germania)
  • 2009 » Michele De Lucchi Arquitecto. Objetos y esculturas recientes, Arkitektura, Barcellona (Spagna)
  • 2009 » Irrefrenabili intuizioni, Studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2008 » Michele De Lucchi. Paintings 2003/04/05, Antonia Jannone Disegni di Architettura, Milano (Italia)
  • 2008 » Ingiustificabili esigenze, l'ultimo insegnamento di Ettore, studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2007 » Poco, poco, quel poco che basta, studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2007 » Le Torri di Adjara, Nuovo Spazio FMG per l'Architettura, Milano (Italia)
  • 2007 » Ottimi errori, Design Gallery Milano, Milano (Italia)
  • 2007 » Wooden Houses, Windsor Kulturgintza, Bilbao (Spagna)
  • 2006-2007 » Casette ad effetto massiccio, Galleria Corraini, Mantova (Italia)
  • 2006 » Walls & Heroic Structures, Moss Gallery, New York (USA)
  • 2006 » Vetri a forma di vasi, Quattro Benelux, Bruxelles (Olanda)
  • 2005 » Casette a forma di casa, studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2004 » Geometries at will, studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2004 » Michele De Lucchi al Beaubourg, Centre Georges Pompidou, Parigi (Francia)
  • 2003 » Artemide & Michele De Lucchi, Yamagiwa Livina, Tokyo (Giappone)
  • 2003 » Traces, of nature, time, hand and spirit. Michele De Lucchi e Ernst Gamperl, studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2003 » In senso industriale, La Galerie d'Architecture, Paris (France)
  • 2002 » Caos e Ordine - Amore e Odio, studio aMDL, Milano (Italia)
  • 2002 » Michele De Lucchi: Dopotolomeo, chiesa di San Lorenzo, Aosta (Italia)
  • 2002 » A mano libera. Disegni senza computer, Ivrea (Italia), 1999; Hamburg (Germania)
  • 1997 » Design Team of the Year, Essen (Germania)
  • 1992 » Michele De Lucchi, Galleria d'Arte La Fenice, Osaka (Giappone)
  • 1991 » Sitz. Avantgarde, Design Zentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen, Essen (Germania)
  • 1991 » Disegni dell'estate, Galleria La Pola, Ginza, Tokyo (Giappone)
  • 1985 » Michele De Lucchi. A friendly image for the electronic age, Tilburg (Olanda)
  • 1975-1976 » Seminari Cavart (Italia)


Alessandra Redaelli

Michele De Lucchi. The free soul of the architect.

"He is the author of the most appreciated Expo pavilion, in Milan. The Zero pavilion which recalls the Earth's crust. As warm as wood, and as soft and sinuous as a laid woman's body. He also autographed the solid yet light Intesa Sanpaolo Pavilion: a benevolent prehistoric animal sleeping among the crowd. Definitely, De Lucchi owns a visionary creativity; he always manages to dilute rigor into fluidity; to sublimate functionality into imagination. Thus because he follows a simple philosophy: the humanistic aspect, or the ability of exciting thoughts and letting emotions fly, should never be lost. The detachment of rigor and the functionality of new technologies are not enough, not even for projects whose main purpose is to contain people.
A first meeting is enough to seize the two souls which coexist within him: the acute one of the architect, expressed through the placid utter and the elegant and measured gestures, and the wild and free soul of the artist, shining through the lively and glowing glance, which turns him, a sixty-four-year-old man, into a passionate boy.
He has always loved contact with materials, the direct work with hands, and this love turned into an artistic activity when, ten years ago, he started sculpting wood in his atelier in Angera. The soul of the architect then found a home in Milan, into a wonderful, huge office, in an ancient building in the middle of the coolest area of the city. A perfectly elegant factory where wood turned both into outstanding design and a place to live, permeating the air with its scent. On the other hand, the soul of the artist found a home in the foundry of Angera, where creativity has been translated into manual skills, patient activity of assembly, carving and cutting of small wooden pieces, so small that the blade constantly brushes against fingers and hurting oneself is very easy. Moreover, it is a place where the artist can be on his own, where realization does not have to deal with compromise. Since the one of the architect is a work of control and direction, whereas the one of the artist is strictly personal, carried on through loneliness and freedom.
Angera, that's where the sculptures are created. The first aspect noticed is their monumental nature – as clotted as an essence – despite their little dimensions. As if monumentality were something inner, a spiritual category. As in Montagne: high, towering, majestic; stratifications of little pieces of walnuts or oak, which seem to be born from a spontaneous germination and give the impression they could grow even more. Or the elegant Palafitte: light, airy, whose voids dominate upon solids, and filled with a vaguely oriental atmosphere. Or Sassi: soft, heavy and sinuous; whose biomorphic shapes suggest a soul, a breath, as if they suddenly could rise their heads and stare back at us. And the Edifici vuoti, probably the most moving ones, whose wood is sometimes cracked and rough and those uncertain lines recall ancestral scenarios of destruction, day after images. Just like Baracche and Baracchette, uneven buildings, articulated into elegant balances, which were recently exposed in Milan, and were anticipated in 2013 by the huge installation prepared by the architect for the exhibition Hybrid, organized at the Università degli Studi in Milan during the Salone del Mobile. These objects are rooted within instinct and gesture; deprived of a project, since it would turn off their authenticity. These are unpredictable objects. Michele De Lucchi describes them like this: "Trembling structures, shattered geometries, approximate compositions. A lot of details. Accurately studied, by focusing upon the combination of materials and chromatic sophistication". It is clear how this declaration was born from his artistic soul, how instinct defined each gesture.
The love he feels for these sculptures is shown by the space they occupy in his office in Milan, as if taking a piece of Angera there – within the realm of rigor – were fundamental. As a matter of fact, according to the architect himself, they are the mean through which he can connect with his inner side and they inspire his most touching projects. By observing the Expo Zero pavilion, it becomes clear how these stratified dunes originated from Montagne. Here lies the fascination of these projects. Just like the grandiose firmness of Sassi inspired the Intesa Sanpaolo Pavilion.
Beside him, while he leads his feverish office, the sculptures guard like tutelary deities upon the realization of architectural projects, hoisted upon high pedestals which allow to admire their beauty, turning around them two, three times so to be conquered by their imposing elegance. Little, perhaps magical, idols which could enchant anyone."

Selected works