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Bisazza is to tiles what Swarovski is to crystals. Each has boosted its profile by signing up the most talked-about designers, artists and architects of the day. So Bisazza has commissioned ranges by leading lights such as Jaime Hayon, Tord Boontje, Fabio Novembre, Andree Putman, Studio Job, Patricia Urquiola and Marcel Wanders.
But the Italian business has relatively recently launched a new non-profit arm which exhibits the work of interesting or topically-relevant creatives. In the last year or so, the Bisazza Foundation for Design and Contemporary Architecture has thrown shows for John Pawson and Arik Levy, and now it’s the turn of Pritzker Prize-winning Richard Meier. His most famous works include the Smith House in Connecticut (check out our video of him talking about it), Los Angeles’ Getty Centre (pictured below), the Neugebauer Residence in Florida and the Jubilee Church in Rome.
This is a bit of a coup for Bisazza, which describes Meier as ‘one of the luminaries of contemporary architecture’. Though at first glance, there’s no obvious connection between the American architect and the tile company, this is without doubt a good time to focus on him, as his firm, Richard Meier & Partners, celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
Bisazza’s retrospective, entitled Richard Meier: Architecture and Design, “will showcase his design philosophy for the first time in Italy”, according to the foundation. So along with models, sketches, renderings and photos of his most important buildings, there will be some products that he’s designed, including a collection of tableware for the high-end US firm Reed & Barton. It’s all on show till 28 July in Vicenza just west of Venice.
And for something bespoke, Meier has created a new permanent installation for the foundation’s gallery space on Montecchio Maggiore. Called Internal Time, this ‘garden’ of angular pillars is described as a “stylised wood of imposing vertical elements in white mosaic”. We have a host of Richard Meier stories on phaidon.com and a truly magnificent Richard Meier monograph in our store which we strongly urge you to invest in. It's one of our favourites here at phaidon.com