ANTIQUES – The art of collecting

MARZADORI, the collector 

Maurizio Marzadori was working as a teacher when he also became an antiques dealer and an art collector. In 1987 he founded Freak Ando in Bologna which is his world‐renowned brand of antiques and modern antiques. His activity led him to collaborate with museums, art galleries, auction houses and eminent artists as he used to supply objects and furniture to exhibitions, permanent collections and art installations. Moreover he was asked to find items for the cinema, the theatre and shop windows by popular directors, set and fashion designers, photographers…

At the Freak Ando he meets architects and set designers with whom he establishes new collaborations to work in historic houses supplying ancient floors, doors and materials. He also works in the field of restoration and deals with every style of furniture: country, chic, stylish and industrial. What’s more, his latest design projects of bars, locations and restaurants are really appreciated by young people too. In the Renaissance cloister in Via Moline – which he defines “his gate to the city” – he has arranged several important exhibitions on applied arts and design.

Atelier Scatola Magica
Un teatro di sensazioni, curiosità, stile. Costumi  teatrali, maliziosi corsetti, costumi professionali per la danza si alternano alle collezioni donna, agli accessori, agli abiti da sposa in una inusuale galleria di proposte con un tratto in comune.

INTERVIEW TO Maurizio Marzadori

When was the Marzadori collection born?

The Marzadori collection of toys and furniture for children’s bedrooms started 27 years ago as soon as my first daughter was born. In addition to the discovery of single objects – which is an everyday treasure hunt – I must say I did a lot of research too. Thanks to ads, research of original brands, geographic analysis and oral memories, I discovered the identity of companies and artists who had been anonymous up to now. All of this has been a pleasant dilemma and the fulfilment of an adventure which is not yet finished.

What are the objects we are talking about? How is the well‐known Marzadori collection conceived?

It’s composed by toys, children’s bedrooms, school furniture, clothes, outdoor toys…They were created by great artists and designers, but also by unknown authors who were inspired by culture and fashion of their time. They created objects to be launched both on the common and luxury markets.

How wide is the collection?

The collection counts approximately 800 pieces of furniture for children’s bedrooms, both for the house and school, mainly Italian, ranging from mass production, more popular, to the ones by great authors which date back to the later nineteenth century up to now.

The section of wooden toys gathers approximately 350 pieces from the first half of the 1900s and is inspired by artistic avantgarde movements. What’s more, 250 children’s items of clothing from the last century have been acquired.

A characteristic which comprises the whole collection…

Every piece tells the story of the design and shows the development of clothing and of the social, productive, cultural, historical and educational changes in our society.

I wonder how much success it had…

Luckily, it is a collection very much appreciated by who comes to visit. What’s more, it has had a wonderful success in the many different exhibitions “outdoors”: in fact it has been (partly or totally) exhibited in several prestigious locations such as in the Archeological Museum in Bologna, Moma in NY, Salaborsa Library in Bologna, Milan Triennale Design Museum and Ca’ Pisani Boutique Hotel in Venice.

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