From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
"The earth is round, all the heavenly bodies are round; they all move on round or elliptical orbits. This same image of circular globe-shaped mini worlds orbiting around each other follows us right down to the microcosmos. We are even aroused by round forms in species propagation related eroticism. Why should I join the straying mass who want to make everything angular? I am going to pursue Galileo Galilei's philosophy: my world is also round." — Luigi Colani.
The prime characteristic of his designs are the rounded, organic forms, which he terms "biodynamic" and claims are ergonomically superior to traditional designs. His "kitchen satellite" from 1969 is the most prominent example of this school of thought. Many of his designs for small appliances are being mass-produced and marketed, but his larger designs have not been built, "a whole host of futuristic concepts that will have us living in pods and driving cars so flat that leg amputation is the only option."
His unconventional designs have made him famous, not only in design circles, but also to the general public. He has received numerous design awards.
Colani currently resides in Karlsruhe, Germany.
- Head of New Materials project group at McDonnell-Douglas in California.
- Receives the Golden Rose international prize for creation and design, in Geneva, Switzerland, for special Fiat bodywork; he is the originator of many Fiat designs in the coming years .
- Colani's Alfa Romeo design is the first sports car to clock a lap of under 10 minutes at the Nürburgring; it can now be seen in the Martini Rosso Museum.
- Catamaran racing success in Hawaii
- The world's first monocoque sports car: BMW 700
- World's first kit car in series: 1700 cars, Colani GT
- Sports coupe, IAA Frankfurt
- Headquarters with major design team at Harkotten Castle near Sassenberg, Germany. Enormous success, work and exhibitions worldwide for many companies of major repute.
- First Far East study trip; Japan recognizes Colani's potential. Invitation by five companies to establish a Colani Design Center Japan. Rosenthal's Teapot Drop designed by Colani in Cooper-Hewitt Museum in N.Y.
- Fanliner, the first plastic sports airplane with a Wankel rotary engine constructed
- Revolutionary trucks, aircraft, car and ship studies at exhibitions world-wide
- Fuel economy world record set by the Colani 2CV (based on the French Citroën 2CV, 1.7 litres for 100 km with the original 2CV engine and chassis.
- Relocation to Japan
- Professor in Japan/Tokyo
- No. 1 industrial designer in Japan; Otaru exhibition, 60 m large shell
- Colani Robot Theatre most-attended at the Tokyo Tsukuba Expo. Pontresina propeller-driven airplane unveiled, having two contra-rotating coaxial pusher propellers with scimitar blades mounted in the tail. The propellers, also known as "centripetal supersonic propellers", were a new design idea. The plane was a design study and is not airworthy.
- Receives the Golden Camera Award for the Canon T90. Colani motorcycle world record in Italy. Foundation of the Colani Design Bern, Switzerland.
- Colani exhibition at Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Car design for Mazda, Japan. Pen design for Pelikan A.G., Germany
- Toulouse and Bremen branch offices. Professor h.c. of the Hochschule für Gestaltung, Bremen. Preparation on a widescale basis for record speed on land, water and air and economy world records in Utah, USA
- Sony headphones by Colani placed in Museum of Modern Art, New York. Formation of the company Colani Trading AG in Zürich, Switzerland
- Exhibition in Centre International de l'Automobile car museum in Paris; Presentation of the new Swissair uniforms designed by Colani
- Creation of optical frames and jewelry collection; Colani Ferrari sets record at Bonneville Speedway in Utah
- Computer mouse design for Sicos; creation of the Colani cosmetics collection; Colani signs a contract with European computer chain Vobis of Germany
- Presentation of the Colani field glasses; Shopping center exposition through Switzerland
- Colani Vobis Highscreen computer gets award for the Computer of the Year 1994. Cooperation with Carl Zeiss Jena
- Cologne, Germany opens new head office of Colani's design works. Designs for major companies in the construction and building industry. China's ambassador invited Colani for future projects to Shanghai, China, and he gets a professor title of the most famous University of Shanghai, Tongji
- Office furniture designs for Grahl, Michigan USA. Architecture project presentation for Shanghai, China, called Bio-City
- Created a new piano for famous piano builder Wilhelm Schimmel. Start of the DESIGN-show through more than 30 shopping centers in Germany
- Start of a bank terminal design project with one of the world's leading computer manufacturers. Design for a new microscope and photo camera at the Colani Shanghai office. Water bottle design for Carolinen-Brunnen, Germany.
- Presentation of a new "shower" (bathroom-combination)-generation for the German company Dusar. Furniture project with Kusch & Co., Germany. A world leader in porcelain, Rosenthal, Germany, plans to promote a special edition of the famous "Drop" teapot designed by Colani.
- "Human-City" architecture model by MW Energie AG in Mannheim, Germany. Colani optical frames presentation at optical shows in Milan, Paris and Las Vegas.
- Design for a new microscope and photo camera (for Seagull) at the Colani Shanghai office. Six exhibitions through shopping malls (ECE-group) throughout Germany. COLANI-Calendar for Castrol-Germany.
- Leading Swiss mineral-water company Valser (acquired by Coca-Cola in 2002) presents new bottle design by Colani. Start of another exhibition-tour through over 25 shopping malls (until 2004) by ECE-Group. Opening of a world-leading museum of design, Pinakothek, in Munich, Germany (including several Colani designs). Spitzer-Silo presents new Colani truck at IAA in Hannover, Germany.
- Uniforms designed for the police Hamburg/Germany. Designed the tt-62-plane for hp-aircraft.de&nbps;— over 40 units of this business jet sold already! Futuristic car design: Speedster shark (see "Visions")
- Guest Speaker and Presenter at World Economic Forum WEF in Davos, Switzerland. Porcelain giftware creations (Cappuccino, Espresso mugs).
"Life on Board" project