Design, art, handwork, ecology, re-use of wood: these are the elements Riva 1920 would like to show through the display “Tra le Briccole di Venezia” (“Among the posts in Venice”) at the Triennale Museum in Milan, held during the Design Week in April, in occasion of the 90th anniversary of the Company.

Following the experience, belonging to the designing culture of the company, with the Kauri wood, come to light after more than 30.000 years, research keeps on with the project “Briccole Venezia”: designing new shapes and functions, without undermining natural balances.

Contemporary architecture and design therefore support sustainability.

The challenge of Riva 1920 is to combine the yearly trend to use natural and ecologic elements with modernity and research for beauty at the highest level.


The so called “briccole”, the posts in chestnut oak on which Venice is built, are used for  docking gondolas and as beacons.

They are at least ten meters (32.8 feet) high and once driven into the lagoon, they have an average life not longer than 5-10 years.

Their section affected by tide rise and fall becomes the natural home for microorganisms as well as sea flora and fauna, but once corroded, they are completely replaced.

The idea is simple: to reuse these posts once their “life” in the lagoon is over.

This is where this initiative originates from. On one side to recover these “briccole”, the high chestnut oak dolphins, you can still clearly see along the lagoon rivers; on the other side the work of those designers invited to reinterpret this extraordinary material, full of history, that water has turned into real “natural sculptures” during the years.

The 22 big names that “sign” the items of the display “Tra le briccole di Venezia” are a real pride as well as a further confirmation of the unique character of this project:

Antonio Citterio (booth), Terry Dwan (console), Michele De Lucchi (bookshelf), Mario Botta (small table), Matteo Thun (table), Pininfarina (model of Cisitalia 202, antique car), Luca Scacchetti (table), Helidon Xhixha (table), Aldo Cibic (table), Enzo Mari (sculpture), Erasmo Figini (lamp), Paola Navone (installation), Karim Rashid (small sofa), David Chipperfield (bookshelf), Pierluigi Cerri (table), Marc Sadler (totem), Franco and Matteo Origoni (stool), Riccardo Arbizzoni (bank), Elio Fiorucci (painting on wood with female legs), Luisa Castiglioni (shelf), Missoni (hammock), Davide e Maurizio Riva.


Venice, the dolphins, their life into water: a way to mark the passing of time, the memory, but mainly the future.

To go over and beyond contemporary trends, looking for brand new shapes in a sort of conscious ready-made, taking design to slow down and finally consider environmental issues, linked to the reuse of natural materials. Wood is alive and its life is renewed thanks to designers and their ideas.


Tra le Briccole di Venezia

TRIENNALE Museum in MILAN – Basement, April 14 – 19, 2010


Press preview:             Tue, April 13th: 11am – 6pm

Inauguration:               Wed, April 14th 7pm to 12pm


Opening time:

Wed, April 14th: 10.30am – 12pm

Thu, April 15th thru Mon, April 19th: 10.30am – 10pm


Display and Catalogue by:             Studio Origoni & Steiner – Milan, Italy

Catalogue produced by:             Riva 1920 – Cantù, Como, Italy


Sponsored by Città di Cantù – Assessorato alla Cultura. 

Special thanks to:

Electrolux – Ibl – La Triennale di Milano – ExpòVenice – Fedrigoni – La Grafica Cantù

Arte TV  – Spirale Milano – Ellezeta Contract  – G.T. Design – Tramo – NeoLogistica

Studio Grafico Nicoloso – Silea legnami – Pignaffo legnami – Binderholz – Gancia Cuvée 

Canella – Mastra  – The House of Mouse – Brochier  – Castadiva Resort – Simone Cenedese


We thank Intesa Sanpaolo Bank for trusting us and appreciating the value of our work.



RIVA 1920 – DESIGN WEEK 2010


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