Richard Sapper

The Richard Sapper Story

Trained as an engineer, Richard Sapper's artistic career actually began in the 1950s with the Mercedes-Benz design department. Feeling creatively stifled working within such a bureaucracy, Sapper moved from his German roots in Munich to Milan and partnered for almost 20 years with famed Italian designer Marco Zanuso before venturing out on his own.

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His design work has included a large range of industrial products, from digital watches and business equipment to cars and bicycles, and from lighting and audio-visual equipment to furniture and kitchenware for many brands, including renowned modern Italian companies, Alessi and Artemide.

Why We Love Richard Sapper

A combination of advanced technology, simplicity of form, and an element of surprise characterizes Richard Sapper's designs. He marries German precision with Italian sensuality to create fun, functional pieces that suit any setting. His style is professional with a youthful twist, making task-oriented lighting or accessories seem more like toys than tools. Sapper designs products that people keep for years and companies sell for decades, such as the IBM (now Lenovo) ThinkPad laptop, Artemide Tizio Lamps, or the now-iconic line of Richard Sapper espresso makers for Alessi Design.

Noteworthy Products from Richard Sapper

The Artemide Tizio Task Lamps really embody Sapper's drive to create innovative, relevant pieces that incorporate the individual into the final design. It's each person's preference and touch that makes the light uniquely suited for the task at hand.

In His Own Words

"The most important thing for me is to give everything I do a form that expresses something. It's not neutral. It has a point of view and a personality."

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Richard Sapper