After graduating with a degree in mechanical engineering from Milan Polytechnic in 1969, Alberto Meda began his career as a technical director for Kartell, responsible for the control of projects. Six years later, Meda realized that design was much more fun than production and began consulting work as a free-lance designer for companies such as Alias, Alfa Romeo, Gaggia, Kartell, Centrokappa, Fontana Arte, Luceplan, Mandarina Duck, Philips, and Vitra.
Meda sees modern technology as a “supermarket of creative possibilities” and exploits it in his designs with virtuosic versatility. In 1987, Meda began his collaboration with Alias presenting the LightLight chair and the Dry table. In 1989, he created the award-winning Lola lamp for Luceplan, as well as the Sistemino, Jack, Berenice, OnOff, Titania, Tibibi, Uni-Line lamps and the Bap and Metropoli lighting systems. In 1996, Meda designed the Meda swivel chair for Vitra.
Meda was awarded the Compasso d’Oro in 1989 for his Lola lamp and the Design Plus in 1992 for his Titania lamp. In 1994, he won the European Design Prize for his work with Luceplan and the Compasso d’Oro for the Metropoli series of lamps. In 1995, his chair LightLight was chosen for the Vitra exhibition of “100 Masterpieces” which toured the world. He has served as a lecturer for the Domus Academy and the Politecnico in Milan. Several of his pieces are now part of the permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art.
During a lecture and gala reception at the Luminaire showroom in Chicago in February 1998, Meda provided incredible insight into materials, process and design, from the perspective of an engineer. Meda also examined how consumerism in the virtual world affects design in the real world in “Internet: Friend or Foe,” a panel discussion hosted by Luminaire in Miami in March 1999.
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