The Plinio il Giovane brand was launched in 1975, in a tiny atelier across the road from the Brera Academy.
Its inspiration came from the magical atmosphere of the nearby Bar Giamaica, Milan’s literary caffe’, where artists, architects and designers dreamt of changing the world.
Mario Prandina, the brand’s founder, designed and produced the first prototypes in a furniture restorer’s workshop just a short walk from the atelier
The man who helped him in this venture was Luigi Meda, an experienced restorer and a great expert in working with wood.
His idea was to create a product in a limited series that would be accessible even to a younger clientele but at the same time very resilient and durable. Mario Prandina’s aim was to design and build products that would give meaning to his social campaign aimed at reducing pollution and limiting the spread of galloping consumerism.
In fact the first items of furniture used old ceiling beams from a farmhouse that was about to be demolished on the outskirts of Milan. Thus Plinio il Giovane’s first pieces of old oak furniture came to be and the first strapline he used was “you buy them so you can also enjoy seeing them grow old”. The second was “we are able to build a Noah’s Ark to save us from the universal flood of plastic”.
It was the first example of recycling in the furniture world at the time. This is the same mission today that underpins the brand’s ethos.
From the archives of Plinio il Giovane the images of the creation of the very first product: the iconic Plinio Bed made by Mario Prandina and Luigi Meda.