It’s that lightness of thought and lightness of product that we all should aspire to.

Matteo Thun

Living With Memphis

Memphis only lasted six years, yet the radical design collective made a lasting impact on the field of design. Memphis challenged the aesthetics of Modernism and, as Aldo Cibic explains, “reset everything design had seen before”. 

Identifiable and bold, Memphis designs found their way onto movie sets and into the homes of forward-thinking and creative luminaries such as Karl Lagerfeld, whose Monaco penthouse was bursting with the bold designs that he acquired directly from Ettore Sottsass and David Bowie who collected Memphis alongside important modern and postmodern art. Memphis also found its way into retail establishments such as Macy's and Bloomingdale's and in the years since its introduction, museum collections across the globe. 

Dennis Zanone first saw the work of Memphis in 1984 during its first American tour and over the past several decades, he amassed an impressive collection that rivals the depth and breadth of Lagerfeld’s and is the largest since the fashion designer’s, which sold at Sotheby's in 1991. Zanone has lived with Memphis and is a champion of the movement. The incredible group of works offered in this sale has been extensively researched and was the basis of the 2014 Memphis-Milano: 1980s Italian Design exhibition at The Dixon Museum. 

Matteo Thun b. 1952

Matteo Thun is a designer and architect, known as one of the co-founders of the influential Memphis group. Born in Bolzano, Italy in 1952, Thun studied architecture at the University of Florence and upon moving to Milan in 1978 he met Ettore Sottsass. Though only part of Memphis for a short time, he made a lasting impact with his distinctive ceramics, accessories and lighting fixtures, notable for their Industrial Age-inspired forms, stylish colors and refined but playful presence. In 1984, he left Sottsass Associati to establish his own studio and also serve as the Creative Director of Swatch, a position he held from 1990 to 1993. He has been awarded the Compasso d’Oro three times, the Green Good Design Award in 2011 and the resorts he has designed are world-renowned for their holistic approach to sustainability, wellness and sensitivity to space and natural surroundings. Thun currently heads Matteo Thun & Partners, which has offices in Milan and Shanghai and practices “Zero Design” or “no design” to create designs and interiors that are simple, refined, durable and timeless.

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Auction Results Matteo Thun

MATTEO THUN, Pinguino I teapot | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Pinguino I teapot

estimate: $3,000–4,000
result: $3,900
MATTEO THUN, Lesbia Oceanica teapot from the Rara Avis collection | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Lesbia Oceanica teapot from the Rara Avis collection

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $3,900
MATTEO THUN, collection of eight vessels | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

collection of eight vessels

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $3,750
MATTEO THUN, Gallus Italicus teapot from the Rara Avis collection | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Gallus Italicus teapot from the Rara Avis collection

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $3,675
MATTEO THUN, Corvus Corax teapot from the Rara Avis collection | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Corvus Corax teapot from the Rara Avis collection

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $3,675
MATTEO THUN, Columbina Descendens teapot from Rara Avis collection | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Columbina Descendens teapot from Rara Avis collection

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $3,675
MATTEO THUN, Tripalle fruit bowl | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Tripalle fruit bowl

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $3,600
MATTEO THUN, Santa Fe ceiling lamps, pair | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Santa Fe ceiling lamps, pair

estimate: $1,000–1,500
result: $3,500
MATTEO THUN, Madia cabinet | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Madia cabinet

estimate: $4,000–5,000
result: $2,400
MATTEO THUN, Columbina Spheroida teapot | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Columbina Spheroida teapot

estimate: $1,500–2,000
result: $2,375
MATTEO THUN, Santa Fe light fixture | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Santa Fe light fixture

estimate: $2,000–3,000
result: $2,160
MATTEO THUN, Kariba fruit bowl | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Kariba fruit bowl

estimate: $300–500
result: $1,500
MATTEO THUN, Santa Fe light fixture | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Santa Fe light fixture

estimate: $700–900
result: $1,430
MATTEO THUN, Pao wall sconces, pair | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Pao wall sconces, pair

estimate: $300–500
result: $1,250
MATTEO THUN, Corvus Corax teapot | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Corvus Corax teapot

estimate: $2,000–3,000
result: $1,250
MATTEO THUN, Nefertiti teapot | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Nefertiti teapot

estimate: $700–900
result: $1,188
MATTEO THUN, Nefertiti teapot | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Nefertiti teapot

estimate: $700–900
result: $1,063
MATTEO THUN, table lamp | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

table lamp

estimate: $1,000–1,500
result: $938
MATTEO THUN, Api ashtray | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Api ashtray

estimate: $300–500
result: $875
MATTEO THUN, Santa Ana ceiling lamp | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Santa Ana ceiling lamp

estimate: $700–900
result: $875
MATTEO THUN, Tuja vase | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Tuja vase

estimate: $600–800
result: $750
MATTEO THUN, Santa Monica light fixture | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

Santa Monica light fixture

estimate: $700–900
result: $750
MATTEO THUN, table accessories | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

table accessories

estimate: $1,000–1,500
result: $625
MATTEO THUN, vase | wright20.com

Matteo Thun

vase

estimate: $700–900
result: $625