Afra and Tobia Scarpa 'Artona' Coffee Table
Afra and Tobia Scarpa, 'Artona' coffee table, maple burl, birch, beech, oak and fruitwood, Italy, circa 1975. Every detail about this design is extraordinary. The square coffee table features four feet that exist out of circular rods. The different types of used wood show in different colors. Special detail is the black base which floats around the rods. The unique base is joined by a tabletop of burl which features different materials, forms and colors. The Artona line by the Scarpa duo was in fact the first line ever produced by Maxalto, the specialist division of B&B Italia. Maxalto was originally set up in 1975 as a high-end division of B&B Italia to focus exclusively on the production of artisanal, mostly wood furniture. The 'Artona' was their first project and also functions as a counter-message against the common prevailing use of plastics in furniture design during the postwar period. Afra (1937-2011) & Tobia (1935) Scarpa both studied at the Venice Institute of Architecture. Tobia first worked for the Italian glass manufacturer Venini. From 1960 on the couple opened their own design studio. Their work includes architecture and everyday items like furniture and clothing. Tobia & Afra Scarpa designed for numerous major Italian and international companies like Flos, Gavina, B&B Italia, Cassina and Knoll International.