Memphis Product Authenticity
Are those sold on memphis-milano.com the “original” Memphis products?
The Memphis company was established in 1981, with the collaboration and authorization of Ettore Sottsass, to produce and sell the products designed by the designers of the Memphis group. Since then, the company has uninterruptedly been producing and selling all the works bearing the “Memphis” name on an exclusive basis, faithfully following the instructions of the creators who designed them. In fact, Memphis Srl is the only company authorized to produce such works, as it is the only company to have an existing contract with all the designers, who are awarded all due royalties. All products sold on memphis-milano.com and by Galleria Post Design are therefore “originals,” i.e. not reproductions or re-editions, as proven by the certificate of authenticity that accompanies them.
Are the products sold “vintage” or “brand new”?
The majority of Memphis-Milano products in the catalog are specially made to meet customers’ purchase requests. Part of the catalog is available from stock and these are new, unused and not second-hand products. Memphis Srl manufactures all the products faithfully following the instructions of the designers who created them, with the collaboration of the finest Italian suppliers. All products sold are accompanied by a certificate that proves their authenticity.
How can I find out whether I own an original Memphis-Milano item?
As is the case in the fashion world, unfortunately there are also illegal operators in the field of design who sell counterfeit products. This has also happened in the recent past for Memphis products, but law enforcement agencies have always discovered fraud early on and the number of fake pieces in circulation is actually very limited. Counterfeit products are very difficult to detect even by an expert. An important feature of all furniture and lamps, however, is the metal label, sometimes numbered, which must always be present on the work. If a piece of furniture or a lamp does not have a label, it is a good idea to carefully ascertain where it comes from. We always advise those who intend to buy Memphis products, even outside memphis-milano.com or Galleria Post Design, to contact our offices before purchasing—we will be happy to offer any help we can about Memphis product authenticity.
Are Memphis products made as series of limited editions?
Unlike the works in the Meta Memphis and Post Design collection, the works in the Memphis-Milano collection were not created to be produced in limited editions. The Memphis-Milano brand was founded to bring joy and cheer to all homes, and only later did the works become coveted by collectors, featured in the most prestigious museums in the world, and sold in auction houses. This does not take away from the fact that some products, such as part of the 1986 glass designed by Ettore Sottsass and Marco Zanini—now sold out—were produced in limited numbers. However, there are very few works in this category, and our offices are at your disposal for any clarification.
Why do the products when seen live sometimes look different from photographs of them from the original period?
Do not be alarmed if sometimes the work purchased seems to differ slightly from the one shown in the catalogue or the online store. The general Memphis-Milano catalog still shows the photographs taken in the 1980s. Unfortunately, the quality of the image, also due to the numerous reprints, is not always impeccable, so the colors shown in the catalogue may not be completely faithful to the item sold. If in any doubt, we suggest also in this case to contact our offices.
The artistic glassware in the Memphis-Milano collections has always been handmade by the master glassmakers of Murano, and each piece therefore possesses unique characteristics both in terms of exact shape and color.