No country does furniture quite like Italy. Anyone with a passion for furniture design has gone — or longs to go — to Salone del Mobile, the world’s leading trade fair for furniture, which is held each spring in Milan.
Unfortunately, like so much else this year, the 2020 edition of Salone del Mobile was cancelled. However, that doesn’t mean the country’s leading furniture makers took a break from releasing cutting edge designs this year. In fact, renowned Italian brand Flexform’s 2020 Collection is extremely impressive, managing to be both modern and timeless.
But what else would you expect from this industry-leading company?
Based in Meda, at the heart of Italy’s furniture production district of La Brianza, Flexform’s history coincides with that of Italian Modernism. The brand was formally named in 1959, but the Galimberti family had been making furniture for many decades before this.
Through the years, Flexform has worked with leading designs and architects to produce furniture that blends seamlessly with contemporary environments. Renowned Italian architect Antonio Citterio has collaborated with the brand for 50 years, contributing an extraordinary array of iconic pieces and coordinating Flexform’s world famous collections. Daniel Libeskind has also designed for the company, introducing the elegant Adagio sofa in 2016.
While Flexform and its designers maintain a firm commitment to innovation, the 2020 Indoor Collection is far from futuristic. In this year of upheaval, the brand decided to explore classic, tried-and-true elements of design.
“The 2020 Collection gives new impetus to Flexform’s aesthetic-design code with numerous proposals in the name of a lifestyle characterized by relaxed elegance, beyond time and fashion,” Flexform explains. “The new seating systems, characterized by a strong personality and a high level of comfort, become the protagonists of a domestic space conceived as a real ecosystem of elements.”
“A real ecosystem of elements”— this phrase encapsulates perfectly the design principles of Flexform, which is committed to furnishing spaces that work. Take the Asolo sofa, designed by Antonio Citterio. Generously upholstered with soft goose down, this sofa is devoid of sharp corners and engineered for relaxation. It is also brilliantly adaptable. A variety of pieces can be mixed and matched to fit the space.
For a slightly more buttoned up, but similarly comfortable sectional sofa, there is the Gregory collection. Also designed by Citterio, the cushions in this sofa are held by elastic webbing that is integral to the aesthetic of the product.
“The austerity of the unique metal base is softened by the warmth of the elegant cowhide used to tailor-finish the exposed parts of the elastic webbing that hosts the seat cushions,” Flexform explains. “Just like the couture tailoring of the grosgrain piping that outlines the soft cushions, this formal-aesthetic solution traces back to the expertise that is the essence of the company’s genetic legacy.”
The Gregory collection also includes a bed. The generously padded headboard is designed to provide consistently comfortable support, while the minimalist frame ensures the piece makes a refined impression.
Book lovers will appreciate the Gatsby armchair. With a smooth silhouette that suits almost any room, this leather beauty is as effortless as its literary namesake.
Similarly timeless is the wicker Tessa armchair, a dressed-down alternative to the Gatsby that will add an earthy touch to a modern living room. The Tessa also comes with a flexible ottomon that can be repurposed as a table.
What is striking about both of these chairs is just how versatile they are. Combining widely popular forms with high-end materials, their appeal only increases the more one looks at them.
This is what Flexform’s 2020 indoor collection is all about: Long-lasting pieces that are simultaneously classic and contemporary. The design of each sofa, chair and bed is refined without being fussy, maximizing comfort without compromising on style. For architects and interior designers looking to outfit living rooms in a manner that is entirely modern, yet not at all pretentious, Flexform is the brand to watch in 2020.