Gabriella Crespi

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Gabriella Crespi
Gabriella Crespi photographed by her son Gherardo Crespi in 1970.jpg
Gabriella Crespi in 1970
Born17 February 1922
Saronno, Italy
Died14 February 2017 (aged 94)
Milan, Italy
EducationAccademia di Belle Arti, Milan
Polytechnic University, Milan
Known forSculpture, furniture design, jewelry design
Notable work
Obelisk (1968-1970)

Lune (1969-1980)
Kaleidoscope (1970-1976)
The Plurimi series (1970-1982)
Animali (1970-1974)
Fungo Lamp (1970-1976)
Z Line (1972-1974)
The Rising Sun Collection (1973-1975)
Nympheas (1975-1979)

New Bronze Age (2015-2017)
Spouse(s)Giuseppe Maria Crespi (m.1948-1974)

Gabriella Crespi (17 February 1922 – 14 February 2017) was an Italian artist-designer whose work spanned furniture design, jewelry and sculpture.

Transforming objects by adding changes in their function, Crespi developed her style with a repertoire of more than two thousand pieces.[1][2] Her work methods recall those of Renaissance workshops, bringing craftsmanship and artistic approach together.[3]

Her design pieces have been appreciated and owned by public figures as King Faisal, the Shah Reza Pahlavi, Grace Kelly,[4][5] George Livanos, Thomas Hoving, Audrey Hepburn, Gunter Sachs[6][7] and celebrated by design enthusiasts and magazines.[8]


At the end of the 1950s, Gabriella Crespi commenced her activity as a designer and presented her first collections in Milan. Mrs. Hoving, owner of Tiffany & Co. and Bonwit Teller at that time, owned her first works and, from the early 1960s, her objects were commissioned by Dior for the gifts department, home decor and dining: the ties between Crespi and Dior will last for almost twenty years.[9][10]

Between the 1970s and the 1980s, Gabriella Crespi gained an elite place among the 20th century furniture designers with her "Plurimi" series (1970-1982), the "Z Line" (1972-1974) and other pieces, such as "Obelisk" (1968-1970), "Moons" (1969-1980) and "Kaleidoscope" (1970-1976).[11]

Crespi retired in 1987 and, at the age of 65, she ventured into the Himalayas where she lived for two decades. She published a book in 2007, "Ricerca di Infinito Himalaya", after the retreat.[12][13]

In 2011 a retrospective exhibition of her work, Gabriella Crespi: The Sign and the Spirit, was held in Milan at Palazzo Reale.[14][15]

In 2015 Crespi launched "New Bronze Age," a series of new limited editions of her most iconic works, including a new version of her "Puzzle Table", whose countertop is made of Murano glass tiles, unique pieces conceived and designed by the architect Franco Deboni,[16] internationally renowned for his glass creations.[17][18]


  • Triennale Design Museum. Il Design Italiano. Milano: Electa, 2018. ISBN 9788891819819
  • Masini, Pierluigi (2018). Gabriella Crespi Spirito e Materia, Arte e Design. Milano: Odoya, 2018. ISBN 9788862884327
  • Triennale Design Museum 9. W.Women in Italian Design. Mantova: Corraini Edizioni, 2016. ISBN 9788875705671
  • Favardin, Patrick et Bloch-Champfort, Guy. Les Décorateurs des années 60-70. Paris: Norma Editions, 2015. ISBN 9782915542776
  • 1968 Italian Radical Design. Athens: Deste Foundation for Contemporary Art, 2014. ISBN 9786185039042
  • Bony, Anne. Gabriella Crespi. Paris: Piasa Editions, 2014
  • Stoeltie, Barbara & René. Parisian Interiors. Paris: Editions Flammarion, 2011. ISBN 9782080301727
  • Cunaccia,Cesare. Gabriella Crespi The Sign and the Spirit. Milano: Mondadori Electa, 2011. ISBN 9788837086183
  • Derieux Matos, Debra. Living in Style Paris. Paris: teNeues Publishing Group, 2010. ISBN 9783832793715
  • Crespi, Gabriella. Ricerca di Infinito Himalaya. Cisternino, Herakhandi Samaj Italiano, 2007.
  • Bony, Anne. Meubles et décors des années 70. Paris: Editions du Regard, 2005. ISBN 9782841051755


  1. ^ Bony, Anne (2014). Gabriella Crespi, p.119. Piasa Editions, Paris
  2. ^ "Ode to Gabriella Crespi" (PDF). Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  3. ^ Cunaccia, Cesare (2011). The Sign and the Spirit, p.42. Mondadori Electa, Milano. ISBN 9788837086183
  4. ^ "Gabriella Crespi -". Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Vogue Living Nov/Dec 2017: Gabriella Crespi - Jason Mowen". Jason Mowen. 2018-03-06. Retrieved 2018-07-18.
  6. ^ "Brillante Interiors: Timeless Gabriella Crespi". 17 February 2012. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  7. ^ "Jason Mowen". 17 February 2012. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  8. ^ "Remembering Gabriella Crespi, a Milanese Original". Vogue. Retrieved 2018-07-18.
  9. ^ "Gabriella Crespi - Abitare le emozioni". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  10. ^ Masini, Pierluigi (2018). Gabriella Crespi Spirito e Materia, Arte e Design, pp.55,57. Odoya, Milano. ISBN 9788862884327
  11. ^ Cunaccia, Cesare (2011). Gabriella Crespi The Sign and the Spirit, pp. 33,36. Mondadori Electa, Milano. ISBN 9788837086183
  12. ^ Cunaccia, Cesare (2011). Gabriella Crespi The Sign and the Spirit, pp.134,139. Mondadori Electa, Milano. ISBN 9788837086183
  13. ^ Masini, Pierluigi (2018). Gabriella Crespi Spirito e Materia, Arte e Design, pp.152,198. Odoya, Milano. ISBN 9788862884327
  14. ^ "Gabriella Crespi: il segno e lo spirito". Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  15. ^ "Crespi Palazzo Reale Milano". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  16. ^ "Galleria Rita Fancsaly Milano - Italian Design". Retrieved 2018-07-18.
  17. ^ "Incredible Crespi". Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  18. ^ "Tutte le sfumature di bronzo". Retrieved 11 July 2018.

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