Is the Memphis Movement Back ?
Is The Memphis Movement resurrecting from the past ? Like everything else, trends are cyclical and what is trending now has somehow existed in the past.
The Memphis Movement is a design movement created in 1981 by the Italian designer Ettore Sottsass. First, he reunited some designers and architects to share the idea. Then, at their second meeting they shared what they’d accomplished so far.
Why Memphis? It must look silly but the name came from a song that was on repeat during their first meeting.
How to recognize a Memphis work? Bright, multi-colored objects with rejection of typical shapes, Laminate and Terrazzo materials. Also, it features a lot squiggles which is the Bacterio print created by Sottsass. Definitely, we can say that this movement was inspired by earlier ones as Pop Art and Art Deco.
However, this style was criticized a lot. People used to say it was a kind of bad mixture between Bauhaus and Fisher-Price.
The movement lasted 7 years before the group dissolved. They made their debut at Salon del Mobile of Milan in 1981. Even if they were criticized a lot, some influential people liked their work and even bought it. For instance, Karl Langerfield liked it so much that he bought the entirely of Sottsass’ first collection. Similarly, when they auctioned David Bowie’s art collection, they discovered he had more than 400 pieces of the Memphis Group.
Today, it appears to resurge. A former member of the group, Nathalie du Pasquier has collaborated with a Danish brand to create some home accessories. Also, Alessandro Mendini, another Memphis Group member collaborated with the street wear brand Supreme to design a set of skateboards in the Memphis style.
To conclude, the opinions back in the days were pejorative about this style. Today, the Memphis Movement has inspired a lot of words including fashion, design and even the automobile industry.
In short, don’t let your imagination be clouded by one’s opinion because what they dislike today, they might be joining tomorrow.