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What makes the Italians so good at designing, be it automobiles, furniture, or fashion?

Viết bởi: Franz Rivoira on Quora, 23 02 2021
I am a designer. I am Italian. And I have some experience in furniture design around the world. Well, let's say, more than a decade.

I have never speculated about this, but it comes to me that the true explanation lies in the fact that Italy has always been a very poor country.

When I say poor, I mean poor by natural resources.

There was very little of everything, since ages past. No iron, no silver, no gold - something that other countries had in abundance.

This was the reason why Italians developed their unique way of "arrangiarsi" - that is, this skill of "self-survival" which made them famous worldwide for good and bad.

Having so little resources, they had to invent ways to make up for their lack, and so this was the propulsive need of their innovative spirit which made them achieve the mastery in engineering, crafts and sciences, which made them world-famous during medieval times (the famous "Maestri Comacini", known Europe-wide for their mastery in masonry) and afterwards, during

the Renaissance, which has been the Golden Era of Italian creativity, and has created a substrate which has seeped in the Italian ways and passed through the generations until today.

More, Italians are exposed to a plethora of acts of beauty throughout their lives. I mean, they literally breathe culture and art throughout their lives.

The majority of the Italian cities' core is old - very old - dating back from Renaissance or Medieval times - or even older, like Rome.

When you dig a hole in the countryside, you more than probably discover a hidden Roman temple.

This continuous exposition to art has its effects: Italians have lived together design and beauty more than other populations, so are probably more attuned to it, and express it in a more natural and personal way.

I think that these two key elements - few natural resources and lots of cultural stimuli - have been the main drivers for innovation and change. And design, that is, an aesthetic way of transforming a need into an object, is something that drives its origins heavily from both.

More answer on Quora
and on BBC: What makes Italy so stylish?
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