ph. Giovanni Gastel
Edra was founded in Perignano, Tuscany, in 1987, and is now famous all over the
world for the excellent quality of its residential interior design solutions, which are a
perfect combination of artistic tradition, technological research, valuable materials
and craftsmanship. Over these years of endless product development, edra has
managed to build a clear corporate identity based on its vision: combining beauty
with personal wellbeing.
Founded in 1987 by Valerio and Monica Mazzei, the second generation of a family
of pioneering furniture designers, edra instantly stood out for its philosophy: staking
it all on exclusive products, made to last, that do not give in to the latest trends.
This has led the company to design sofas and other items so accurately that they
can be considered to be unique, distinctive pieces, made to be passed down from
generation to generation as heirlooms.
edra’s distinctive values are its commitment to technological research and a
constant focus on design. It is on such grounds that the company selects its
architects and designers, who have eventually become successful professionals
and household names. This is what happened with Zaha Hadid, with the Campana
Brothers, Fernando and Humberto, with Francesco Binfaré, who has been working
with edra since 1993, with Jacopo Foggini, Masanori Umeda, to name just a few.
All this until 2014, under the artistic and intellectual guidance of Massimo Morozzi,
whom edra fondly remembers.
Nowadays, the sofas, armchairs, beds, tables, cupboards and lamps by edra
make up an unrivalled collection of pieces that define an outstanding landscape.
Behind each piece there is a story, universal messages that bring people together,
at all latitudes.
It is above all the world of sofas that edra has always focussed all its attention on,
no longer as decorative pieces in one’s “living room” at home, but as the hub of a
comfort that must be lived to the full. This has shaped the concept of a sofa that
can easily adapt to different places and people, taking new shapes and positions
to meet any special requirement. A sofa that changes its looks, like the Flap. One
that has interchangeable geometries, like On the Rocks. One that looks and feels
cuddly, like the Pack or Sherazade. A timeless one, like the Absolu. One that
becomes the symbol of making time for oneself, like the Grande Soffice, the new
sofa that combines great comfort with an exceptionally large size.
A search for quality and a constant pursuit of product innovation has led edra to
develop exclusive solutions for its sofas, the result of a decades-long partnership
with Francesco Binfaré. One of such solutions is the , which can
be moulded and shaped as one likes, with which one can find the most relaxing
position with a flick of one’s hand. Inside, an organic clutch inspired by the aviation
industry lets the cushion rotate by 180°.
Exposed to stress tests with hundreds of thousands of movements, the “smart
cushion” proved to be simply perfect.
Another exclusive technology developed by edra’s research team is the
Gellyfoam®, a patented material inspired by the biomedical industry that offers
ultimate comfort. An unexpected softness wraps the body and provides the right
level of support: it took years of endless experimentations to achieve such level of
Loyal to its values, edra is the proud supporter of everything “made in Tuscany”:
it is in Perignano, a town surrounded by the history and beauty of the Tuscan
countryside, that its sofas are designed and manufactured. edra’s Development
Centre can rely on highly skilled and selected labour that knows how to masterly
treat all the steps in the manufacturing process. The technical quality of the
materials is certified and always aims at offering the highest level of comfort.
The fabrics used for the upholsteries are an integral part of the design, not a mere
addition: exclusively made for edra, they need to fulfil technical specifications – first
and foremost, strong, thick yarns – that perfectly match the materials so as to give
the sofa the right shape.
The aesthetic qualities of thefabrics must then agree with the language of the piece:
they are its skin, they have to meet tactile and visual requirements, they must live in
perfect harmony with the shape.
The factories use next-generation technology throughout the process, keeping
excellence and sustainability in mind: for edra, this value means producing pieces
that are made to last, far from the concept of built-in obsolescence.
For years, edra has been in the collections of the most important international
museums of contemporary art and design, all over the world. Its pieces are in the
permanent collections of the MoMA in New York, in the Centre Pompidou and the
Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, the Triennale Design Museum in Milan, the
Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein and the Die Neue Sammlung in Munich, to
mention just a few.
edra has flown the flag of Italian excellence at the Rio 2016 and 2018 Pyeongchang
Olympic Games. In addition, edra believes in and supports culture; it publishes
books that tell about the beauty of Italy and its products.
In 2017, edra celebrated its 30th anniversary. A story apart.
In 2018, edra launched an exclusive showroom design, called Spazio edra: an
innovative design by Stefano Pasqualetti, architect and photographer, which has
been opened in Moscow , Milan, Lissone, Bologna, Naples, Brindisi, Brescia and
“As a businessman, I don’t like to make something out of an empty sketch, even
less if it’s a bit trendy. I think that an extremely high quality piece, that must agree
with a certain lifestyle, cannot be born out of an exercise in style. The aerospace
industry works like us, as it has to meet a specific requirement: going into space,
accomplishing a mission by relying on mathematics and on perfect engineering.
In the pharmaceutical industry, they don’t care if a tablet is fashionable or trendy:
that product needs to solve problems and make people feel well. This is what I’m
interested in. This is the kind of research we do”.
Valerio Mazzei, president of edra.