A student of Ernesto Nathan Rogers, Magistretti learnt his craft in his father’s studio. He constructed numerous buildings in his hometown of Milan, such as the church of the QT8 neighborhood (1953), the Tower in the Park (1956), and the houses in Piazza San Marco (1965) and Piazza Aquileia (1961). He became famous at the 1959 CIAM when one of his villas in Arenzano caused a sensation over its mix of modernist and vernacular elements.
Nonetheless, Magistretti is mainly remembered as a furniture designer; some of his pieces are celebrated "Made in Italy" icons: his Carimate chair, (1960) his Maralunga sofa (1973) and the Nuvola Rossa bookshelf (1977) for Cassina; his Eclisse lamp (Golden Compass Award 1967) and Selene chair (1969) for Artemide.
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