Giovanni “Giò” Ponti, (1891-1979) was born in Milan, Italy. Giò was an Italian architect, industrial and furniture designer, artist, and publisher. In 1921, after serving in the army during WWI, he graduated in architecture from Politecnico di Milano.
In 1928, he established the Domus magazine, which focused on architecture, art, and design, and is still being published today. During the late 1920’s, Ponti built houses in Milan and Paris, including the “Domuses”, which looked like typical Milanese homes from the outside, but had innovative interiors, with flexible spaces and modular furniture.
In the Forties, his work expanded to include stage sets and costumes for La Scala in Milan, Murano glass, and the 1948 La Pavoni coffee machine. During the 1950s, Ponti did an increasing amount of industrial design, including the 1953 Distex Armchair and the 1957 Superleggera Chair. Ponti also built one of the Milan’s most iconic 20th-century buildings, the 1956 Pirelli Tower.
In the 1960s, Ponti’s attention shifts to surfaces, color and light. Among these years are, among others, the project of the Hotel Parco dei Principi in Sorrento, the churches of San Francesco and San Carlo in Milan, etc.