Moka

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With the Officina line of pens I attracted the attention of the most important people in the world of pens. Part of the success of those pens is also due to the country I come from. It is because I am Italian and I am part of the most important design culture in the world that I had to present a new pen. I thought it was impossible, but it all happened during a telephone call. I was doodling with my pencil when I interrupted my telephone call and said, “sorry, but I have to go … I designed my new pen.” I realized it was the coffee-maker only after I had drawn it. The inspiration came at the right time because even in this pen there is a memory from my youth. The so-called “American kitchens” hadn’t become popular yet in Italy. In my grandmother’s huge but minimally decorated kitchen there were four or five different size espresso-makers hanging on a wall above a shelf. They were the only decorative elements in the kitchen and I had never seen my grandmother make coffee with them. She polished them every day. This was in the 1950s, the time in which the Moka, designed and produced by Alfonso Bialetti in 1930, started to become well known all over the world. It reached places in the world where uses and customs regarding beverages were completely different from ours and it was used as a decorative accessory just like my grandmother had done. I too see in this everyday object made up of two containers that screw into each other a masterpiece of design. Nothing is more difficult to design than simplicity and I wanted to dedicate a writing instrument to this jewel of design that is more than eighty years old now.

Giuliano Mazzuoli