Masterworks: Italian Design, 1960-1994 showcased the spirit of fun and experimentation prevalent in Italian design, while examining both modernist and antimodernist trends in the context of contemporary Italian culture.

The exhibition brought to public view iconic works of furniture, as well as objects, metalwork, glass, ceramics, and lighting. Notable pieces included the Up 5 Armchair by Gaetano Pesece, Achille Castiglioni’s Arco lamp, the Fiocco Chair by Group G 14, and the Tartar Table by Ettore Sottsass. Additionally, the exhibition featured works by preeminent designers including Franco Albini, Joe Colombo, Vico Magistretti, Massimo Vignelli, and Aldo Rossi, as well as objects produced by the groups and manufacturers Memphis, Kartell, Artimede, and Poltronova. It also included a number of designs that never made it to production, such as Gio Ponti’s molded fiberglass chair Novedra, from 1968.

Brought to Bard Graduate Center by the American Federation of Arts and curated by R. Craig Miller of the Denver Art Museum, Masterworks: Italian Design was shown in two parts. The first focused on the 1960s and 1970s, when Italy was becoming an international leader in design, while the second examined new developments from the eighties until 1994.