Design: Product composed like a song

(September 2010) The potential of design ideas – not mere public relations shows – is effectively demonstrated by Italian-based Lithos Design. Their inspiration is simple. „Design to sell“, says the firm’s Alberto Bevilacqua.

It may sound like a hackneyed phrase but behind it is a six-point concept.

Foremost is the humility of self-assessment. Asked how the company came up with the idea in the first place, Lithos Design’s CEO confesses that the idea was adopted from other Chiampo-Valley enterprises: „We have a great number of firms working in the leather industry and their claim to success is to come out with something new each year.“

Prime insight: stone producing companies can learn from other branches.

Second insight: design’s sustained life depends on new ideas.

A point of particular interest is Lithos Design’s business concept which compares to a group of musicians. Readers may anticipate: Alberto Bevilacqua is a semi-professional musician, playing guitar in a hard-rock band. As he says: „Just like the songs are the fruit of common brainstorming, so, too, are the design ideas born in an exchange with a group comprising designers, technicians and merchants“.

Third insight: creativity and marketing success for good design requires team-players including designers, technicians and merchants.

But now we must mention the company’s designer even if an elaborate report is reserved for a later edition: his name is Raffaello Galiotto. Some of his collection, e.g. tribute to the Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio or „The Doge’s Marble“ already created great excitement at the Verona trade fair.

One aspect of his design is of particular importance in this context: he takes account of the material and integrates its peculiarities in the design. E.g. the surfaces of his tiles are smooth and regular but the regularity is almost rudely interrupted by veins and sedimentary deposits in the stone itself. Whereas some consider these particularities shortcomings of the material in comparison to ceramics, Galiotto actually turns a vice into a virtue.

Forth insight: success in stone design does not come from substituting stone for other materials.

Another of Lithos Design’s strong points is the use of modern technology, not least because this assures bargain prices. That is the fifth insight.

Here, too, „Song writing“ as a group, so to speak, is the order of the day: if the current technology does not allow for the production, Lithos Design together with the technical experts will further develop the machines to adapt to the task at hand.

And finally the sixth insight: the company entertains close contact to a group of scientists called „Materialdesign“ at the University of Ferrara. At what profit to the company? „Discussing with scientist widens the scope of thinking“, according to Alberto Bevilacqua.

Lithos Design has been established for three years coming forth from the head enterprise Bevilacqua which employes 25 co-workers and looks back on three decades of business in kitchen countertops, albeit also culminating in projects such as the design of shops for the perfume and jewellery manufacturer Bulgari. Lithos Design has worked extensively for hotels and in wellness projects. It has but two co-workers but access to the staff at the head enterprise.

Lithos Design


Photos: Lithos Design