Micha Weidmann Studio is working on a new website for Italian design house Fornasetti.
Fornasetti was founded by Milan-based artist Piero Fornasetti, who designed the company’s products himself, and also collaborated with architect Gio Ponti. Following Fornasetti’s death in 1988, the company was taken over by his son, Barnaba.
Micha Weidmann Studio was appointed to develop the website in July, according to creative director Micha Weidmann, who says the consultancy had been in talks with Fornasetti for about two years to collaborate on projects. It started work on the site in September.
Weidmann says, ‘Barnaba has spent a long time repositioning the business in the right way, and this website is one of the first steps in establishing Fornasetti online. It comes with a look that respects and showcases the company’s design.’
He adds, ‘We didn’t want to create crazy new branding, we wanted to take what was there and make it work.’
The website opens with a woman’s face, over which hovers the cursor, which has turned into a bee (pictured). ‘Immediately, you enter the surreal world of Fornasetti,’ says Wiedmann. The screen also references a portrait of opera singer Lina Cavalieri, which appears repeatedly in Fornasetti’s designs.
The website then splits into three sections, says Weidmann: story, creations, and shop and visit. The story section covers biographies of Piero and Barnaba Fornasetti, and tells the story of the company itself.
Weidmann says, ‘There is also a bee buzzing around on the screen, and if you click on it you get images of the cat at the Fornasetti house, or Piero’s erotic sketches.’
The creations section will provide a comprehensive round-up of the products on offer, while shop and visit will provide details of how to buy the products, and potentially an e-commerce site.
Weidmann says, ‘Fornasetti is interested in timeless design – it’s not interested in what’s modern or trendy.
The company takes its time and does things right. The new website is set to launch in early December.
THE FORNASETTI STORY
1913 – Piero Fornasetti born in Milan
1935 – exhibits at Milan Triennale
1940 – works with Gio Ponti for the first time
1988 – Fornasetti dies, his son Barnaba takes over the company
2009 – reworks website with Micha Weidmann Studio