The Cavour Desk - Designed by Carlo Mollino (1905-1973)
What was so special about this piece of furniture? It was the work of Carlo Mollino, the Turin-born designer and architect. Both it and he were one-offs: the table created for an Italian noble's luxury apartment, its maker not only an artist but a speed freak, an occultist and an erotic photographer.
Several of his most famous pieces were designed for Zanotta in the 1940s and 50s. His "Ardea" armchair (1944) had a wood base and a shapely upholstered seat with a removable cover, produced in bright colours. He also created several plate glass tables, the 1946 "Reale" table for Zanotta and the 1950 "Arabesque" table for the interior of the Singer store in Turin. The "Arabesque" has an upper and a lower glass surface, supported by a cascading piece of moulded plywood, which is bent to form a magazine rack.