Italian design and society

'If you bought this machine, it said something about you.'

Art and design historian Dr Philippa Joseph examines three classic Italian designs - the Olivetti Lettera 22 typewriter, the Necchi Mirella sewing machine, and the Grillo telephone.

Olivetti advertising posters

Dr Joseph recommends taking a look at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art's (SFMoMA) wonderful Ing. C. Olivetti & C. collection, which includes advertising posters designed by Giovanni Pintori.

Dr Philippa Joseph

Dr Philippa Joseph is an art, architectural, and design historian, a lecturer for Martin Randall Travel in Italy and Spain, and a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Historical Research, University of London (from October 2020). Since first living in Italy as a teenager, Dr Joseph has been fascinated by, and sought to research and understand, the development and specificity of industrial design in Italy in the decades following the Second World War.

Dr Joseph's upcoming course

Highlights of Sicily's Cross-Cultural Heritage

This virtual weekly class will introduce key examples of Sicily's cultural heritage, including its great Greek temples and sculpture, Roman mosaics, Siculo-Arabic architecture, resplendent Norman churches, and Baroque jewels, including Serpotta's stucchi and the town of Noto.

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