Nefertiti Teapot, ca. 1981
The form, colors, and pattern of this teapot designed by architect Matteo Thun in 1981, the year of Memphis’s founding, exemplify the group’s aim to offer creative perspectives on everyday objects. Here the typical format of the teapot as a triangle has been extruded and exaggerated; the handle juts upward at a cartoon-like pitch and the spout projects as a tubular extremity. The body of the pot is covered in a dense pattern resembling 1950’s laminate, a characteristic motif of Memphis objects. While the appearance of this object is decidedly contemporary, the teapot’s pattern name, Nefertiti, links it to the ancient past conjuring up associations between the teapot’s triangles and the form of the pyramid, also present in the other pieces in the tea set, a sugar bowl and cup and saucer. This combination of the new, the old, and the unexpected in this teapot represented the entirely fresh interpretation of design that Memphis pioneered.
This object was
George R. Kravis II.
It is credited
Gift of George R. Kravis II.
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Its dimensions are
H x W x D: 19.2 × 20.5 × 18 cm (7 9/16 × 8 1/16 × 7 1/16 in.)
Cite this object as
Nefertiti Teapot, ca. 1981; Produced by Memphis (Italy); molded, glazed and enameled earthenware; H x W x D: 19.2 × 20.5 × 18 cm (7 9/16 × 8 1/16 × 7 1/16 in.); Gift of George R. Kravis II; 2018-22-62-a.b
This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection.