Medium
Image rights
© Gaetano Pesce

“I like beauty full of mistakes because we are human. Perfection is for machines, it is obsolete, gone,” Italian designer Gaetano Pesce has said. Throughout his career, Pesce’s exuberant work has experimented with color and industrial materials like polyurethane foam, resin, and plastics. Recent projects have been inspired by natural forms, like a couch that looks like a mountain range and tables that call to mind bodies of water (complete with miniature beaches and islands). But perhaps his most radical innovation is the combination of social commentary and design. In his iconic UP 5 & 6 sofa and ottoman from 1969, a curvaceous chair based on the female form with a ball and chain for an ottoman, the beautiful piece contains an embedded commentary on the oppression of women around the world.

Collected by major museums
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
Selected exhibitions
2019
Gaetano Pesce: Age of ContaminationsFriedman Benda
2016
Gaetano Pesce: Molds (Gelati Misti)MOCA
2015
Highlights from the Architecture + Design CollectionSan Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
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Seaweed chair, 1991

Fabric and resin
32 × 45 × 31 in
81.3 × 114.3 × 78.7 cm
.
Permanent collection
Location
San Francisco
Medium
Image rights
© Gaetano Pesce

“I like beauty full of mistakes because we are human. Perfection is for machines, it is obsolete, gone,” Italian designer Gaetano Pesce has said. Throughout his career, Pesce’s exuberant work has experimented with color and industrial materials like polyurethane foam, resin, and plastics. Recent projects have been inspired by natural forms, like a couch that looks like a mountain range and tables that call to mind bodies of water (complete with miniature beaches and islands). But perhaps his most radical innovation is the combination of social commentary and design. In his iconic UP 5 & 6 sofa and ottoman from 1969, a curvaceous chair based on the female form with a ball and chain for an ottoman, the beautiful piece contains an embedded commentary on the oppression of women around the world.

Collected by major museums
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
Selected exhibitions (3)
Other works from Highlights from the Architecture + Design Collection
Other works by Gaetano Pesce
Related works
Related artists