Italian designer and architect
Aldo Cibic (born 1955, Schio, Italy) is an internationally acclaimed designer and architect and a pivotal contributor to postmodern design in roles with both the Memphis Group and his own studio, Cibic & Partners. Through his studio he has created an impressive array of product designs and architectural, interior, and exhibition designs for clients all over the world.
Born in 1955 in Schio, a small town near the Italian city of Vicenza, Cibic did not pursue training as an artist, designer, or architect but instead followed his own passion to become a self-trained innovator. This drive led him to Milan in the late 1970s, when he joined the circle of Ettore Sottsass (1917–2007) and eventually became a partner in the Sottsass & Associati studio, along with Matteo Thun. In 1980, he again teamed up with Sottsass and Thun to cofound the influential Memphis Group. It was at the Memphis Group that Cibic developed his fascination with experimental design and with the novel, boundary-pushing concepts proposed by the Memphis Group, encouraging Cibic to embrace the pursuit of new aesthetic ideas.
Building on the revolutionary spirit of the Memphis Group’s cutting-edge designs, Cibic went on to establish his own studio with colleague Antonella Spiezio after the Memphis Group dissolved. Cibic & Partners launched in 1989 and followed a focus on industrial design. One of the studio’s earliest successes was the Standard line (1991), which featured a wide array of home furnishings and decorative objects that embraced various materials. In this studio, experimentation continued to serve as the guiding principle.
Accordingly, Cibic and his colleagues explored the bounds of industrial design and its implications in a variety of professional and personal contexts. This responsiveness to both trend and function has resulted in the studio’s ongoing success as well as the growth of the studio over the years. For example, in 1995, Luigi Marchetti joined the team and rose in the ranks to become a director of many of the firm’s architectural engagements and eventually partner in 2002.
Beyond his design studio, Cibic has served as faculty member at Politecnico di Milano, the University of Architecture in Venice, and Domus Academy in Milan, and is an honorary professor at Tongji University in Shanghai. He has also collaborated and exhibited in important installations, including Microrealities, in which he focused on the relationships between people and their environments and how people’s actions are what determines the identity of a space (and not the other way around). Microrealities was exhibited at the Venice Biennale of 2004. He also collaborated on Rethinking Happiness, a project that aimed to improve the quality of life of people on economic, social, and environmental levels by activating people to act on what is best for the future of their communities. Rethinking Happiness was exhibited at the at the 12th Venice Architecture Biennale 12th Venice of 2010.
It was around this same time that the Cibic Workshop was established as a research space for sustainable, contemporary design for projects that tackle public spaces.
Last updated: April 19, 2019
For additional information on Aldo Cibic, please visit the following:
“Aldo Cibic.” Design Principles & Practices.
“Aldo Cibic” Floor Nature
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