Minotti – Comfort then Feeling @ Milan Design Week 2011

Minotti – Comfort then Feeling @ Milan Design Week 2011

Minotti Design Identity 2011 –  is the name of the new collection and it is a means for also communicating Minotti’s identity, of tradition, balance and quality.

Through an elegant, meticulously tailored production, the collection once more describes the personality, style, character of the brand. The entire collection is inspired by the ’50s. but the retro tone is balanced by incorporating some innovative technologies at the same time. Each piece was co-ordinated by Rodolfo Dordoni and the Minotti design team, and once again is refined down to the smallest detail.

Pique textures, embroided canvas, textured linens and cotton fabrics are all very  impotant and valuable components to Minotti. This year in complimenting and contrasting shades of rust, ecru, black and white. All fabrics are manufactured by Italian companies on the recommendations of Dordoni.

A Minotti interior gives you the sense of  high quality and elegant design, refined, but without the fashionable frills. Simple but perfectly co-ordinated, one feels simply good. The collections presented never go out of fashion, and seamlessly co-ordinate with the collections of prior years.

Rodolfo Dordoni imprints the “contemporary classical” stamp on his work for Minotti – rather than the design of each individual piece, it is the materiality and the all-over impression that counts.

Alessandro, Renato, Alessio and Roberto Minotti

“Comfort is the most important thing, then the feeling”

A quite interesting insight into Minotti follows as Roberto and Renato Minotti talk about design, art, and the taste of the Germans ( for a German newspaper in Mar 2011) …..

The two sons Renato and Roberto Minotti have led their father’s business operations in the twenty-first century

 What are the benefits of a family business?

Renato : A rare commodity is today to run a family business. There are many no longer, and I think it is important that a family does take care of the problems and the development of the company. We are two brothers. Our father has founded the company in 1948 and we continued it, and now the twin sons (aLessandro and alessio ) of my brother Roberto have joined the company, that is, the third generation is now already on board.

We understand each other very well, we have a very clear idea of the direction of the company. We are not dependent on external partners. This is a great advantage. A family-run business is also a guarantee of continuity and passion.

How are the tasks within the company distributed?

Renato : Roberto is an architect, and I have studied economics, and so we have split these two areas in the company, but we decide everything jointly. This combination is very valuable for the company. We have developed a concept. We are a furniture company, but the approach is similar in fashion labels such as Louis Vuitton, Hermes and others. They are very high class and timeless. I think this is the main difference between Minotti and other Furniture Firms. It is not only a beautiful sofa, or beautiful seating, they are all part of a global idea.

The designs by Minotti are always in a beautifully timeless way. Is the name of your previous collection, “Senza Tempo”, your corporate philosophy of timelessness?

Roberto: Yes, I think the new collection reflects the whole philosophy of the company, because it is a combination of modern and traditional style. The collection is timeless, timeless like style, timeless quality.

Renato : the name of the collection is timeless. And why do we think that the collection is “Senza Tempo”? Because it includes three major components: a touch of vintage, a well thought-out design and Haute Couture.

What can we expect from the new Minotti designs?

Renato: We love contemporary art and often visit museums and galleries. Each of our products is named after an artist or musician. And we are considering to integrate as a fourth component, so to speak, art in our products.

So is art an important inspiration for you?

Roberto: One of many, Yes. Fashion, art, films, news, the financial and cultural situation, we observe all this very intensively. We deliver in 62 countries worldwide. Our export rate is 80 percent. So we work with around the world, we have 22 different Mono Brand shops and 500 dealers all over the world. It’s like at fashion companies. The style of Chanel works everywhere. The language must be global, and I think we have found the key.

What is the main market in addition to Italy?

Roberto: In Europe, the German market is very important. Outside Europe, the Asian market is very important for us.

Renato: In the last few years we have a very good feeling for the German market. Here substance is important but also design. The taste goes to the end not too much, but not to the minimalism.

Why is Italian design so successful? Is a risk that other countries take this leadership position?

Roberto: I think that Italian design is still leader. There are also some wonderful companies in other countries. But many different interesting firms concentrate in Italy. It is possibly in the DNA of us Italians to follow the aesthetics in design and fashion. Just as it is typical for Germans to produce the best cars (laughs). In Italy it is perhaps connected with the history. Art and architecture have here a very long tradition. In Italy we have the three “F”: furniture, fashion and food .

 Let us travel shortly to the past. Your father founded the company Minotti in 1948. How has it continued since then?

Renato: Our father was very careful for high-quality production. Over the years, it was hard to continue on the high qualitative level, because the employees were older and it was not easy to find young people who had the necessary knowledge. We have found a solution. We always try to hire the sons of the most important employees, so that the transfer of knowledge from father to son can take place. We love this continuity, because the concept of a family business is experienced not only by the owners, but also by the employees.

Also in your collaboration with the designer Rudolfo Dordoni, you are very constant. Minotti has worked together with Dordoni since 1997.

Renato: Yes, he’s a very good designer and also an interior designer. And he loves the art. This combination allows him to offer very different approaches to a project. And because of these different visions we love to work with him.

If you look, how we live and we set up – how is the change in the future?

Roberto: I believe that the future has already begun. In 2009, we have experienced a major crisis. For me, there is no crisis, but a change. We must learn to understand that the crisis does not end, but we have to change the terms and conditions, we are in a process. We at Minotti interpret this change in our way. We have decided with regard to our work, to the seriousness: good quality and good service, no unusual shapes or colors, not too extravagant, luxurious products, but still they must elegant be. There must be a good balance between price, emotion and quality. Because if people buy something, it is always also about emotion.

What makes up a good sofa?

Roberto: Comfort is the most important thing, then the feeling. We consider a sofa, we have a feeling of intimacy. If you’re sitting on the sofa, you need to use all senses, it comes to feeling the look. The quality must be perfect. I think the feeling in sofas is so important, because we think this on something soft, comfortable. The sofa embodies this feeling.

Do you have a favourite?

Roberto: This is not so easy, there are so many. At home I have the “Jagger”-sofa. It is absolutely comfortable. The dimensions are quite generous. But I really like the new collection.

How would you describe Minotti in three words?

Roberto: (Hm, this is difficult, because I use like many words (laughs)

1. manufactured 100% in Italy.

2.absolute quality

3. Sensuality

Interviewed by Julia Maier / Zeit.de / World Art Magazine March 2011

Published in the magazine world art, 03 / 2011

Share your thoughts