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"Martino Gamper: Design is a state of mind" opens at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery
Martino Gamper, Installation view, design is a state of mind Serpentine Sackler Gallery, London (5 March - 21 April 2014)© 2014 Hugo Glendinning.
LONDON.- Serpentine Galleries has invited the influential London-based Italian designer Martino Gamper to curate a new exhibition at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery. design is a state of mind presents a landscape of shelving systems, telling the story of design objects and their impact on our lives. This is the second major design exhibition staged by the Serpentine, following Design Real curated by Konstantin Grcic in 2009.

Martino Gamper said: “There is no perfect design and there is no über-design. Objects talk to us personally. Some might be more functional than others, and the emotional attachment is very individual. This exhibition will showcase a very personal way of collecting and gathering objects – these are pieces that tell a tale.”

An extensive display of shelving systems from the 1930s to the present day forms the backbone of the exhibition. Ranging from historic design classics and one-off pieces, to industrial, utilitarian, contemporary and newly commissioned work, the exhibition includes designs by Gaetano Pesce, Franco Albini, Ettore Sottsass, Ercol, Gio Ponti and IKEA. Each display system is also being used to organise and exhibit collections of objects curated from the personal archives of Gamper’s friends and colleagues as well as an extensive library of contemporary furniture manufacturing catalogues from around the world. Among the designers whose collections are displayed are: Enzo Mari; Paul Neale; Max Lamb & Gemma Holt; Jane Dillon; Michael Marriott; Sebastian Bergne; Fabien Cappello; Adam Hills; Michael Anastassiades; Andrew McDonagh & Andreas Schmid; Daniel Eatock and Martino Gamper himself.

Martino Gamper: design is a state of mind is presented in collaboration with Museion, Bolzano, Italy and Pinacoteca Giovanni e Marella Agnelli in Turin and runs concurrently with an expansive exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery by American artist Haim Steinbach. Furthering the Serpentine’s commitment to contemporary design, both exhibitions highlight objects that have made a significant impact on our lives and offer new perspectives on material culture.

Martino Gamper (b. 1971, Merano, Italy) lives and works in London. Starting as an apprentice with a furniture maker in Merano, Gamper went on to study sculpture under Michelangelo Pistoletto at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna. He completed a Masters in 2000 from the Royal College of Art, London, where he studied under Ron Arad. Working across design and art venues, Martino Gamper engages in a variety of projects from exhibition design, interior design, one-off commissions and the design of mass-produced products for the cutting edge of the international furniture industry. Gamper has presented his works and projects internationally, selected exhibitions and commissions include: ’Tu casa, mi casa’, The Modern Institute, Glasgow (2013); ‘Bench Years’, London Design Festival commission, V&A Museum, London (2012); ʻGesamtkunsthandwerk’ (Karl Fritsch, Martino Gamper and Francis
Upritchard), Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth – New Zealand (2011); Project for Café Charlottenborg, Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen (2011); ‘Bench to Bench’, public street furniture in East London in collaboration with LTGDC (2011); ‘A 100 chairs in 100 Days’, 5 Cromwell Place, London (2007); ‘Wouldn't it be Nice...Wishful thinking in Art & Designʼ, Centre dʼArt Contemporain, Genève (2007). Gamper was the recipient of the Moroso Award for Contemporary Art in 2011, and the Brit Insurance Designs of the Year, Furniture Award in 2008 for his project ‘A 100 Chairs in 100 days'.

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