What’s on the table
by Thomas Edelmann | 4/27/2016
Via Genova, 206
19020 Ceparana (SP)
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Schiffini: a long entrepreneurial history
Schiffini is known world wide for its timeless designer kitchen collections, distinguished for their quality, innovation and refined elegance.
It is a historic brand of excellence in Italian industry: it is a moment of continuity and solid entrepreneurship between the past and the future, as well as a point of reference for Italian Design, of which Schiffini was one of the first promoters and creators, linking its name to leading exponents of a cultural movement which profoundly affected the years following WWII.
Schiffini celebrated its 80th anniversary in 2005, a time span representing a wealth of experience and management expertise that has been passed on from generation to generation within the family. From its creation in the mid-1920s as a maker of interior furnishings for the shipping industry, to its transformation to a kitchen factory and the company that it is today, Schiffini has made a significant contribution to that vision of society which took a central role from the ‘50s onwards - the idea of a future in which the quality of life could improve.
Already, towards the end of the 1940s, with their specialisation in kitchen furnishings, Schiffini became the first to offer kitchens made with modular components produced on an industrial scale, anticipating changes in the social framework that would ten years later lead to the birth of Italian Design. In the 1960s they were among the few companies that were sensitive to the first stirrings of industrial design and put their entrepreneurial know-how at the disposal of designers exploring new models of creativity, thus giving birth to Italian Design, a true cultural movement resulting from the fusion of industrial production and design. Schiffini's association with Vico Magistretti, one of the Masters of Italian Design, proved vital during this period.
This long history has produced many prestigious collections, each distinguished for their construction, materials, dimensions, function and innovative solutions, and all with a common thread of research into new functional concepts and special attention to life styles.
In fact, "Concept Design" has always characterised Schiffini kitchens, as a conscious decision to not follow passing trends and styles. Another distinctive feature of many of the company's collections is the extremely close relationship between product and territory, Ligury, with which the company name has always been linked and to which Schiffini has wanted to pay tribute through its collections. The typical values of this Mediterranean environment, its colours, people and local tradition have suggested names and inspired shapes, materials and design solutions, producing kitchens that remain extremely modern even years after their conception.
To testify to the Company's evolution and the cultural and social contribution it has made to Italian design and industry, Schiffini has started a first collection of historical pieces, which it houses in the company offices in Ceparana. In 2006, it organised the exhibition "Schiffini and Italian Design 1940-1969" in La Spezia. The show was a synthesis of thirty years of Italian Design, through a collection of significant, well known pieces in everyday use, counter marked with the name of Italian companies that have contributed to writing the history of design.
Schiffini was also responsible for creating the travelling exhibition "A Tutto Tondo", which is still in progress, and features a collection of glass objects designed by Vico Magistretti.