At B&B Italia, enduring design and innovation shape the imagination.
The furnishings that grace B&B Italia showrooms worldwide are marked by the story of the visionary who brought it all into fruition. Piero Ambronio Busnelli — a man whose colossal curiosity and talent for innovation revolutionized the furniture industry — launched C&B Italia with Cesare Cassina in 1966. In 1973, Busnelli took over the business and renamed it B&B Italia.
A passion for bold experimentation, a focus on technology that continues today with B&B Italia’s expansive R&D division, and collaborations with design luminaries — including Afra and Tobia Scarpa, Renzo Piano, Mario Bellini and more — has resulted in iconic designs, impressive manufacturing discoveries, and unforgettable ad campaigns over the years.
When Busnelli began creating furniture through injection-molded polyurethane, the world took notice. From Gaetano Pesce’s shock-and-awe, vacuum-compressed Up5 armchair at the 1969 Milan Furniture Fair — which blew into shape on its own when unpackaged — to Naoto Fukasawa’s cult classic Papilio chair, the ground-breaking forms propelled the furniture industry forward. As B&B Italia’s General Manager of the Americas, Jan Vingerhoets, explains “Because of the way we produce our furniture, and our work with foam, we are free of the constraints of shapes.”
This year, B&B Italia launched a special edition of Pesce’s Up5_6 in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the designer’s Serie Up collection of chairs, and updated Antonio Citterio and Paolo Nava’s famed Diesis 40 sofa in honor of its 40th anniversary. 2019 launches include Piero Lissoni’s multifaceted Dock sofa system, Vincent Van Duysen’s enveloping Pablo Seat, as well as Michael Anastassiades’ newly structured Jack bookcase system.
Between the incredible range of products offered by designers such as Zaha Hadid, Patricia Urquiola, and Marcel Wanders, B&B Italia is not defined by one style or look — each design carries its own weight yet retains a certain consistency. Vingerhoets expands on this notion: “There is an Italian design aesthetic mixed with an international aesthetic thanks to the designers we work with — it’s a multilingual style, multi-curated by one company, in one place.”
The UP Studio, a full-service architecture, interior, and brand design studio, agrees. Their design of a chic tropical retreat in Boca Raton, Florida features a plethora of the company’s designs. “B&B Italia offers a range of pieces that, in this case, helped us define certain zones in an open floor plan,” says Giulia Chiarlitti, Senior Designer at UP. The collections are timeless and beautifully curated. They complement any style and aesthetic.”