In cartoons, when Donald Duck or Mickey Mouse have a sensational idea, a bulb lights up over their heads. When the idea of a lifetime came to Giuseppe Colonna Romano, a bulb lit up not over his head but in his hand. He took the bulb and put it inside a transparent sphere, and it was finished: A company was born. “It was in the 80’s, when I first decided to put electric bulbs inside plastic shapes like tall and short cubes, spheres and parallelopipeds” said Colonna Romano, who turned 65 this year. Then various shapes started to emerge -a heart, a three dimensional star –into compositions of different shapes, colours and sizes which formed lamps or chandeliers. The frontier was furniture and it had been crossed “I imagined a house with all it’s pieces of furniture lit up” explains Colonna Romano. “and i built all its pieces- chairs, sofas, tables, bookcases and so on”. But just the house wasn’t quite enough. Thus, the garden and the pool with the exterior line was born. Today, his company Slide Design is a pearl amongst the luxury brands of Italian small and medium enterprises. Slide Design produces it’s creations in a fancy new factory in the outskirts of Milan and sells them all over the world. Italian Design is key: almost all national designers are contributing to the new Slide Design catalogue. From Paola Navone to Stefano Giovannone, from Luigi Amendola to Giuseppe Colonna Romano himself, are designing new pieces with LED based lighting. “Italian design is our message to the world”, he elaborates “Whenever we travel abroad we see people go crazy for italian design, everything that has feels like BelPaese sparks the interest of Americans and Asians”.
The jump from design to art was easy, Slide Art is the brand, new Slide Design business unit that displays the best contemporary artists as contributors: Alessandro Mendini, Fabio Rotella, Flavio Lucchini and Stefano Soddu among others. But not Mr. Colonna Romano “I love art, but I’m not an artist at all. I’m simply an entrepreneur proud to be Italian, to work in Italy and to provide the whole world access to italian style”.