Humberto and Fernando Campana

Humberto and Fernando Campana are famous Brazilian designers born in the 1953 and 1961 respectively. Neither brother intended to be a designer. Humberto initially studied law, and only started to design furniture 30 years later, after his brother, Fernando, has already completed his architectural degree.

They started creating around 1983, and their style is characterized by the use of ordinary and neglected materials such as cardboard, fabric, rope, wood scraps and sometimes aluminium wire in combination with advanced technologies. They draw inspiration from the street life and carnival culture so significant for Brazil. They gained acclaim also through the controversy their work conveys. Transforming something poor into something rather decadent and luxurious is the main goal of their work. Critics believe that this process of transformation has given a new perspective to contemporary design which previously was thought to be dominated by rationalist European ideas. Their new aesthetic, heavily based on experimentation and technology gives them the ability to exploit the spirit of their inherited tradition. Evidence of the global recognition came in the late 90s, when MoMA exhibited their art, making them the first Brazilian artists to have this honour.