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FontanaArte was founded by architect Gio Ponti in 1932. A leader in advanced Italian glass manufacturing and design, FontanaArte's works were first distinguished by artistic stained-glass windows, many of which remain a part of modern life (Duomo of Milan, Cathedral of Brasilia). Ponti realized the potential of this material and soon FontanaArte started to produce furniture, lamps and objects with glass as the main distinguishing feature.
Over the years, FontanaArte has collaborated with many architects and designers including Pietro Chiesa, Gae Aulenti, Pierluigi Cerri, Piero Castiglioni, Vico Magistretti, Vittorio Gregotti, Ettore Sottsass, Umberto Riva, Alvaro Siza and Renzo Piano, all of whom have contributed to the very high quality of design that is FontanaArte.
Renzo Piano was born in Genoa, Italy in 1937. From 1959 to 1964 he studied at the Milan Politecnico, where he taught until 1968. In 1970 Piano established a partnership with the English architect Richard Rogers.
Together, Rogers and Piano designed a number of buildings in Italy and England. Their most famous building, the Pompidou Center in Paris, takes its form from a metaphor of the 'cultural machine' with all color-coded service elements and structure emphasized on the building's exterior.
Like most works designed by members of the "High-Tech" movement, Piano established technology as a starting point for his designs. Fortunately, he modified his attempts to generate an architectural character based on technological forms with a concern for user comfort and needs.
In his more recent works, Piano has applied his structural experiments to a range of social and civic projects.View other products by Renzo Piano