philippe starck on claudio luti's vision for kartell + the luxury of plastic
philippe starck on claudio luti's vision for kartell + the luxury of plastic
jun 08, 2015

philippe starck on claudio luti's vision for kartell + the luxury of plastic

philippe starck on the vision of kartell president claudio luti + the luxury of plastic
portrait © designboom




as a long time collaborator of kartell, philippe starck has developed a number of designs that have pushed the boundaries of plastic furniture production, including: ‘dr. glob’ (1988) – the world’s first chair made from polypropylene; ‘la marie’ (1999) – the world’s first single moulded chair made from polycarbonate; as well as ‘uncle jack’ (2014) – the world’s first single-moulded polycarbonate sofa — all of which can be viewed, alongside kartell’s other plastic manufacturing feats, at the newly renovated kartell museum (see designboom’s extensive story on the public archive here).


designboom spoke with the french creative during the 2015 salone del mobile, who reflected on the vision of the italian company’s president, claudio luti, and the use of plastic as an accessible and innovative material; while elaborating on the newest tables — ‘sir gio’ and ‘uncle otto’ — for kartell’s 2015 introduction.


philippe starck on the vision of kartell and plastics, and his ‘sir gio’ table for the company’s 2015 collection
video © designboom


philippe starck-sir gio-kartell_designboom_001
‘sir gio’ table
thermoplastic technopolymer base and glass top
∅120 x H 74 cm
base: crystal, smoke grey, yellow, amber, bottle green; glass: top crystal, smoke grey, yellow, orange



philippe starck’s ‘sir gio’ table is an extension of the ‘aunts & uncles’ family he presented for kartell in 2014. the monolithic design has been injection moulded to form a sculptural base that supports a round top. ‘sir gio’ reflects on starck’s obsession with creating maximum effect with minimal amounts of material, embodied by a strictly transparent polycarbonate base.

philippe starck-sir gio-kartell_designboom_002
up close of the monolithic table and its sculptural base




philippe starck to designboom on the development of ‘sir gio’: there is no innovation, it is just the ultimate sophistication of injection moulding. you cannot imagine how every millimeter is a complicated calculation, and we need to have the best tooling and things like that. we worked a lot on the reflective qualities of the table. it’s not a revolution, it’s clearly an evolution.’
philippe starck-sir gio-kartell_designboom_003
‘sir gio’ is the definition of starck’s obsession with creating maximum effect with minimal materials

philippe starck kartell uncle otto designboom
‘uncle otto’ table, from ‘aunts & uncles’ collection
transparent or mass-colored polycarbonate
L43 x H37 x D61 cm
base: crystal or smoke grey; to: crystal, smoke grey, yellow, amber



starck rounds-off the ‘aunts & uncles’ collection with a small side table. ‘uncle otto’ features like a tray, and is characterized by an either solid black or transparent polycarbonate top that boasts an elegant two-tone effect.

philippe starck kartell uncle otto designboom
‘uncle otto’ features a top that boasts a two-tone effectphilippe starck kartell uncle otto designboom
the table is made from either solid black or transparent polycarbonatephilippe starck kartell uncle otto designboom
‘uncle otto’ rounds out starck’s ‘aunts & uncles’ collection for kartell

  • Dear Shuhei Senda, in this article it is stated that “‘dr. glob’ (1988) – the world’s first chair made from polypropylene”. I don’t know exactly what you mean by “world’s first chair made from polypropylene”, since in 1975 Kartell itself produced the “4875” chair that was made in polypropylene, probably the first one in the world…

    Paolo Bartoli says:

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