Fontana Arte: Lighting up homes since the 1930s

Italian design brand Fontana Arte has been creating lighting fixtures for over 80 years, with some of their earliest designs still amongst their most popular.

Fontana Arte has built a reputation around their classic designs. Founded in 1932, the design company creates clean, contemporary decorative pieces that they claim will fit into any home or commercial environment.

Classically Italian in their aesthetic, Fontana Arte still stock a selection of their early pieces, many of which are now deemed as collectors’ items. In fact, some of their pieces sit in collections in museums and galleries across the world – the Museum of Modern Art in New York amongst them. The clean shapes and neutral designs give their fixtures a certain timelessness that has maintained design relevance over time.  

Over the years, the company has collaborated with leading designers across the world; a recent contributor to the Fontana Arte light family was the award-winning Japanese architect Shigeru Ban.

All materials used by Fontana Arte are of the highest quality – marble and handblown glass – rather than synthetic.

Some of the classic fixtures from the catalogue that exemplify the Fontana Arte style are as follows:

The Ashanghai, by Max Ingrand, was designed in 1955. It has a glass shade and glass legs held together by brass joints.

The Blom, designed by Andreas Engesvik in 2013, is a playful and flexible table lighting option. Like a flower, you can move its petals to change the direction of the light. It also comes in a selection of vibrant colours.

The Cheshire table lamp, designed by Gam Fratesi in 2013, has become one of the most popular items in the Fontana Arte range. Its soft shape spreads the light downwards to the table and the floor.

The Fontana table lamp, also designed by Max Ingrand in 1954, is made entirely out of glass and is the company’s absolute best seller. Unique in its look and function, the body and shade switch on and off independently. For the 60th anniversary year, Fontana Arte brought out a stunning black glass version of the lamp.

Fontana Arte has significantly helped to shape the style and trends of international lighting designs. These progressive and elegant pieces are soon to be available in South Africa, and will be on display at the new Euro Nouveau showroom, which is based at the Cape Town branch of Eurolux.