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Mario Bellini (b.1935)


Mario Bellini graduated from the Politecnico di Milano in 1959.

Among his teachers were Ernesto Nathan Rogers and Gio Ponti.

His practice included furniture and product design, architecture and exhibition design.

From 1963, Bellini started a long collaboration with Olivetti. For them he worked on the design of the Programma 101, an ancestor to the personal computer. He created many of their leading products, the Lexikon 82 Typewriter or the Divisumma 28 Printing Calculator.

He designed also TV sets, audio systems for Yamaha or Brionvega.

He worked for car makers such as Renault, Fiat and Lancia.


As a furniture designer, he had a very successful collaboration with Cassina, B&B, Artemide and Flos.

For Cassina, he designed the « 932 » chair (1965), the CAB chair (1976).

For B&B, he designed the Camaleonda (1970) and the Bambole (1972) among his greatest successes.


Mario Bellini and other Italian designers of the 60s understood a new approach was necessary when the society was leaning toward a less formal, more comfortable lifestyle.

This was achieved through the creation of new materials such as polyurethane foam used by designers and industrials as the basis for reinventing the structure of furniture pieces.

The classic wooden or metallic frames would disappear to give birth to flexible, sculptural forms. The Camaleonda or Bambole are perfect illustrations of this new tendency.


As an architect, Bellini created the Islamic Art wing of the Louvre Museum, the Deutsche Bank Headquarters in Frankfurt, the Milan Convention Center (Mico) in Milan.


He received eight Compasso d’Oro awards.

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