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brevetti italiani In 2000 an interesting book, Brevetti del Design Italiano was published by the Italian Patent Office and Electa Publishers. It discusses the post WWII development of Italian design through a look at the various patents received at the patent office.

These documents are always extensive with photos and drawings and very accurate descriptions. From furniture design to lighting design, mopeds to bicycles or even cars, the editors made a superb selective choice. Bilingual Italian/English text, it offers a look into the dark secret corridors of Italian modernist design between plagiarism of the originals passed off as the “firsts” of everything and the true originals.

I highly doubt if we see a similar publication come out of the Chinese Patent Office anytime soon, even though good Chinese designers and fabricators come out with “cost effective interpretations” flooding markets world wide. A softcover book with 177 pages generously illustrated with mostly black and white photographs.