Manlio Armellini, the soul of the Salone del Mobile di Milano, leaves a big legacy
Manlio Armellini, secretary general and later CEO of Cosmit (the body that organized the Salone del Mobile di Milano), died yesterday. From 1965 to 2009, Manlio Armellini was the soul of the Salone del Mobile was responsible for its transformation from a furniture fair into an international lifestyle event. Under his guidance, the Salone del Mobile grew from 97,000 square meters in 1974 to the current 207,577 square meters, with an authentic boom in professional visitors, from 67,000 to 315,353, half of which are international. Finally, in the meanwhile, the Italian furniture industry has become a symbol of high-end Made in Italy production worldwide.
As early as 1965, Manlio Armellini had the idea of organizing collateral cultural initiatives. In this way, he paved the way for the transformation of the Salone del Mobile into a further-reaching cultural event, which has expanded enormously over time. Since the end of the 1960s, the Salone has attracted visitors from all over the world and made Milan the center of the design world. For his “promotion of Italian design”, Armellini was awarded the Compasso d’Oro in 1987. For his very long activity in the field of design, furniture and accessories, he received numerous awards and acknowledgements, and became Cavalier of the Grand Cross to the Order and Merit of the Italian Republic.
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Manlio Armellini and Salone del Mobile di MiIano
Born in 1961 as an idea of some entrepreneurs, from the very beginning, the Salone del Mobile has been an excellent channel for the export of Made in Italy furniture, a greatly expanding industry. 328 exhibitors participated in the first edition, organized on an exhibition area of 11,180 square meters, attended by 12,000 visitors. For the last edition, in 2019, the exhibition area exceeded 200,000 square meters and was attended by 2,300 exhibitors and over 370,000 visitors from all over the world. In addition to the approximately thousand Fuorisalone events, which make Milan the center of the world during Milan Design Week.
Salone del Mobile.Milano was initially postponed until June and later cancelled and postponed until 2021. As of November 17, 2020, the dates of April 13-18 are still confirmed. However, the Covid-19 pandemic keeps evolving, making it extremely complicated to make correct predictions. The future will depend on many factors.