Lella Vignelli and Massimo Vignelli - Design New York Tuesday, December 7, 2021 | Phillips
  • Over the course of their four-decade-long design practice, Lella and Massimo Vignelli collaborated on projects that ranged from product design and brand identity to interior and furniture design. Whether designing New York City’s subway map or a coffee table, they created bold and inviting designs that reduced form to its most essential elements.


    Sketch for the present model table, circa 1984. Image credit: © The Vignelli Center for Design Studies.

    Their Kono table, for example, typically features a glass tabletop resting on a two-part base consisting of a rectangular prism cut from stone and a conical metal form. Buyers could choose from a range of finishes to the conical form and a range of stone types for the rectangular form. Describing the Kono table, the Vignellis stated, “This design exploits the relationship between geometrical figures and material finishes.” 

    "This design exploits the relationship between geometrical figures and material finishes."
    —Lella and Massimo Vignelli

    The present table is a rare variant of the Kono coffee table as it has been scaled up for use as a table or desk. Rather than using a glass tabletop as is typically found on Kono tables, for this example the Vignellis selected black granite. Also, rather than use a rectangular prism-shaped base, the present table features an L-shaped base. It still employs the cone-shaped base typical of Kono tables. The Vignelli Center for Design Studies, which houses the artists’ archive, holds two known drawings of the present model table though it is unknown if the other table was ever produced.

    • Provenance

      Private collection, California, acquired directly from the designers, 1984
      Thence by descent
      Acquired from the above by the present owner

    • Literature

      Germano Celant, Mildred Constantine, David Revere McFadden, et al., design: Vignelli, New York, 1990, p. 250 for a similar example
      Massimo Vignelli, Designed by: Lella Vignelli, New York, 2013, n.p. for a similar example


Rare "Kono" table

circa 1984
Imperial Red granite, black granite, patinated copper.
28 1/2 x 86 1/2 x 39 3/8 in. (72.4 x 219.7 x 100 cm)
Produced by Casigliani, Pisa, Italy.

Full Cataloguing

$8,000 - 12,000 

Sold for $11,340

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New York Auction 7 December 2021