Gufram: Living with a Cactus
Updated: Sep 20
The most iconic of Gufram product, CACTUS is the epitome of radical design and the symbol of subversion of the rules which, since 1972, has been exhibited in countless international museums and institutions around the world questioning the static and rigid world of the interior design project. But CACTUS is not a sculpture…or, at least, not only a sculpture! It is a domestic piece of art which combines aesthetics and functionality.
Made in flexible polyurethane, Gufram's Cactus is soft and thornless. This hall tree with four cantilever arms is almost as tall as a person, and looks like an ironic totem that personifies the grit, imagination, and humor of design in the Seventies. Able to gather all the attention upon itself, it frees itself form functionalism at all costs, because it can fulfill its function or be used as an ornamental element.
Made entirely by hand, each piece is unique: as a matter of fact, the 2165 bosses that characterize its surface are finished by hand one by one by specialized workers and later painted with Guflac, the special and unique paint patented by Gufram that makes it possible to make polyurethane look like leather while maintaining its flexibility and softness.
Over the years CACTUS has been reinterpreted in many ways, always keeping its distinctive look although varying in colours. The last two editions are Another Green and Another White. Another Green is a tribute to the original edition, but the green one is characterized by a different, lighter and brighter, alive and contemporary tone; Another White, on the other hand, acquires a warm, soft, natural allure, with a shade of white that approaches ivory, the tone of canvases.
In 2016 a special edition of 169 pieces has been produces in collaboration with British designer Paul Smith, mixing the irreverent coat hanger and Paul Smith’s unmistakable flair. The ironic totem, which embodies the strength, creativity and humour typical of 70s design, becomes Psychedelic, thanks to the fusion of the lively, shiny colours chosen by Paul Smith, one of the leading figures of British design.
The different version of Gufram’s Cactus can all be combined with different styles and architecture, adding to each room in the house the dreamy and irreverent utopias of the 70s.