LIVES AND WORKS
LIVES AND WORKS
AMeBE is an artistic duo based in Milan, composed by Alessandra Mantovani (b. Brianza, Italy, 1983) and Eleonora Barbareschi (b. Tradate, Italy, 1984). Mantovani and Barbareschi met while studying at the Istituto Europeo di Design in Milan, where they received BAs in Industrial Design. In 2005 they moved to New York, where Barbareschi obtained an MFA in Design and Technology at Parsons School of Design. The same year the duo began their creative collaboration, and in 2008 they moved back to Milan to establish their independently owned and led Design Studio.
AMeBE’s ironic and conceptual projects are informed by the unique integration of their arts background with the use of contemporary, cutting edge technologies. The duo’s “forte” lies within their interdisciplinary approach, which gives AMeBE the chance to create with a unique blend of artistic craftsmanship and industrial, digital and aesthetic inventiveness. Their name, in addition to being the acronym of the founders initials (A+M & B+E), is inspired by the ‘amoeba’, the fascinating organism characterized by its continuous evolutions ‘mutable and perpetually transforming’. The term Ameba, or rather Amoeba, is derived from Ancient Greek and means ‘change, transformation’.
Together since 2005, AMeBE define themselves as complementary and indispensable. As the bomb and the fuse, they give their best together, stimulated and fed by an endless intellectual tension that sparks from the antipodes of their individual being. AMeBE straddle and balance between folly and rationality, rigor and disorder, intellect and heart, sacred and profane making their “marriage” fun and inexhaustible, constantly giving birth to unique creations.
While bringing together innovative production techniques and high quality materials, AMeBE’s work feeds on Italy’s heritage, diversity and complexity. But it’s AMeBE’s positive and ironic outlook on life that defines their creative work while questioning the status quo.
AMeBE’s work has been supported by numerous International Awards and collaborations. Choosing Italy as their base has been one of the most stimulating yet difficult challenges: “We were only 23 when we won the 1st prize for the DeiSign Award during Torino World Design Capital which gave us a start to begin our journey. The obstacles have been numerous but the creative spark has been stronger than anything!”
AMeBE first made their mark as a duo within the field of Food Design with the product ‘Finger-Dip,’ which was Awarded a Red Dot Product Design Award in 2010 in Essen, Germany. Influenced by the location of their studio, in the heart of the industrial Design district of Italy (Brianza), AMeBE’s focus eventually shifted to the field of Furniture Design, through which they refined their characteristic classical and ironic approach.
AMeBE’s artistic research brought them to seamlessly weave Art and Design, as exemplified by the unique contemporary sculptures produced for Silver Sea Luxury Cruise Ships or commercial commissions such as the branding, product design and realization of the perfume brand Parco1923.
AMeBE’s versatile and innovative approach was recognized by the Red Dot Concept Design Award in 2013 in Singapore.
AMeBE’s collaborations and experiences have also seen them head of Gaetano Pesce’s workshop in NYC with a selection of pieces for Design Miami. Among other ongoing design projects, AMeBE have been designing new products for brands such as: SELETTI, RIVA1920, SITAP, MODO or Adwin Furnishings that brought them all the way to China.
Most recently AMeBE entered the Collector’s market by producing the unique chandelier entitled ‘Cupola’. The piece was recognized by the Arte Laguna Prize in Venice in 2019 and later represented by David Gill Gallery as a Limited-Edition at prestigious fairs such as Masterpiece in London and The Salon at the Park Armory in New York City.
AWARDS & EXHIBITS:
2022 Exhibition: ‘Gold One’ and selected works for Eccentrici e Solitari, Museo di Palazzo Doebbing curated by Vittorio Sgarbi, Sutri, Italy.
2022 Site Specific Installation: ‘Seek to Believe’ for the Namibian Pavilion – Biennale Arte 2022, Venice, Italy.
2021 Exhibition: ‘EXTRA VERGINE’ for Brera Design District, Cleo Cube, Milan, Italy.
2021 Design Award: ‘EXTRA VERGINE’ DNA Design Award Winner, Paris.
2019 Art Fair: ‘Cupola’ series at Salon Art + Design, Park Armory, New York, USA.
2019 Art Fair: ‘Cupola’ series for David Gill Gallery at Masterpiece London Art Fair, London, UK.
2019 Exhibition: ‘Marilyn’ on show at Museo Leone di Vercelli, Vercelli, Italy.
2019 Exhibition: ‘Superufficio’ for Supercolla Project Curated by Guido Musante and Maria Chiara Valacchi – Milan Design Week.
2019 Award and Exhibition: ‘La Cupola’ Arte Laguna Prize finalists, Venice, Italy.
2018 Exhibition: ‘La Cupola’ for Italianissima at MUSA Museum, Salo’, Italy.
2018 Exhibition: ‘Psycho’ for L’Essere Calpestata, Gobbetto Showroom, Milan, Italy.
2018 Site Specific Installation: ‘Fish Out of Water II’ for Silver Spirit by Silversea Luxury Itinerant World Cruise.
2017 Exhibition: Prossimo Futuro curated by Luigi Prestinenza Puglisi and Monica A. G. Scanu, Cagliari, Rome, Naples, Milan, Italy.
2017 Fair: CIFF The 39th China International Furniture Fair, Guangzhou, China.
2017 Site specific Sculptures: ‘Wind Force 12’ for Silver Muse, Silversea Luxury Itinerant World Cruise.
2016 Exhibition: ‘Zoccole’ for Upgrade, Palazzo Delle Stelline, Milan, Italy.
2016 Exhibition: ‘La Cupola’ for 5Vie during Salone del Mobile, Design Week, Milan, Italy.
2016 Fair: The 26th China International Furniture Expo, Shanghai, China.
2015 Site specific installation: ‘Cucchiaio’ for Riva1920 and Expo 2015, Como, Italy.
2014 Exhibition: ‘Lietech’, Arnold and Sheila Aronson Galleries, New York, USA.
2013 Award and Exhibition: ‘Lietech’, RED DOT CONCEPT DESIGN AWARD, Singapore.
2013 Award: Fedrigoni Top Awards Selection, Parma, Italy.
2013 Award: ‘Librido’ 1st Prize Award Winner for Torino Digital Festival, Torino, Italy.
2012 Award: ‘Movin’ Up’ GAI Award, International mobility for young Italian artists, Italy – New York.
2012 Exhibition: ‘Bodegas’, Art prints for Vigo Maritime Museum, Vigo, Spain.
2011 Exhibition: ‘Tallone d’Achille’, Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Lissone, Lissone, Italy.
2011 Award: 3rd Prize for the Appennino Lucano Logo Design, Benevento, Italy.
2010 Award + Exhibition: ‘Finger-Dip’ RED DOT PRODUCT DESIGN AWARD, Essen, Germany.
2010 Exhibition: ‘Contorsioni’, Misael Gallery, Milan, Italy.
2010 Exhibition: Interieur Design Biennale, Kortrijk, Belgium.
2010 Exhibition: Triennale Bovisa Museum, Milan, Italy.
2010 Award: Young Talents Selection with Bombay Sapphire, Hamburg, Germany.
2010 Exhibition: ‘Tino’ Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, UK.
2009 Exhibition: ‘Finger-Dip’, Arteteco Gallery, Benevento, Italy.
2008 Award: ‘Bradipo’ for Alcantara Every Day Travel Contest, Milan (Italy);
2008 Award & Exhibition: ‘DeiSign’, 1st prize Award Winner, Torino World Design Capital, Cuneo, Italy.
2007 Award & Exhibition, ‘Meridian’ installation for SIGGRAPH Space Time Exhibition, San Diego, USA.
2007 Exhibition: ‘Meridian’ at Chelsea Art Museum, New York City, USA.
WHO I AM
Creative duo AMEBE
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