Door 16: Martino Gamper

Photography by © Jasmine Bruno

At the beginning of the 20th century Marcel Duchamp shocked not only the art world with his ready-made pieces, consisting of pieces he found and then declaring them art. Now this shocks no one any more, but is still fairly new to the Design world, where the Italian designer Martino Gamper is known for re-assembling used and found pieces.

Chairs from Gamper's 100 Chairs in 100 Days series

He was born in 1971 in Meran. Showing an early interest to not follow his parents' fruit farming business, he started as an apprentice at a furniture maker in his hometown. After a short stint in Florence, he studied sculpture at the Academy of Fine Art in Vienna, overseen by Michelangelo Pistoletto - a founding member of the Arte Povera movement. He also took courses at the University of Applied Arts in the ceramist master class of Matteo Thun, who then hired him briefly for his Milan studio.

In 1998 Martino Gamper moved to London to study at the Royal College of Art under Ron Arad and graduated in 2000, where he now teaches. His design is characterized by his interest in its social and psychological aspects. He describes it that "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. "

He is most known for his project 100 Chairs in 100 days in 100 ways, shown originally in 2007. The show consisted of reassembled, re-contextualized chairs and found pieces, which is an ongoing project for him. Next to that he does exhibition design, interior design, custom one-off pieces, or mass produced pieces for companies like Thonet, Moroso or Magis.

Also his work is characterized by a lot of collaborations like with his wife the artist Francis Upritchard or the jeweler Karl Fritsch. Next to his design he also curates shows like the 2014 show design is a state of mind at the Serpentine Gallery and co-founded the publishing company Dent-de-Leone.