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Alberto Meda

Alberto Meda

Italy (1945)
Headshot of designer.

Alberto Meda represents the fusion of art and science, reason and imagination, technical innovation and formal virtuosity that characterizes the best of Italian design. He is among the young designers whose individual talents became visible as early as the 1970's and have continued to grow through the end of the century, making design a force that affects every aspect of modern life. Meda's contemporaries include Mattheo Thun, Ron Arad, Philippe Starck, none of whom can be contained within a single movement or aesthetic. At the same time, all have blurred the boundaries between technology and art.

Meda first studied mechanical engineering at the Politecnio di Milano, graduating in 1969. Only a few years later, he was appointed Technical Director for the design-oriented manufacturer, Kartell. In 1979, Meda made the decision to pursue independent work as a designer and engineer, and became a consultant to Alfa Romeo and Italtel Telematica. In 1983, he began teaching industrial technology at the Domus Academy, one of the most prestigious schools of design in Europe.

Meda is acknowledged for his ability to use state-of-the-art materials in ways that are visually arresting as well as structurally sound. For example, he created the sculptural Light Light chair using a Nomex Honeycomb core and a matrix of carbon fiber to achieve remarkable strength and lightness. The Light Light chair also exemplifies Meda's interest in using industrial materials in a non-industrial context.

The wonderfully functional and comfortable Meda task chair, designed during the 1990's, combines ergonomic sophistication with a visual coherence that testifies to his engineering background. Meda's portfolio is comprised of a wide range of products – everything from fast cars to high-tech lighting to cast-aluminum seating – that have won a number of design accolades, including a Compasso d'Oro and Design Plus award.

Alberto Meda

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