Fernando and Maddalena De Padova began their business in the 1950s, importing Scandinavian furniture and objects and selling them at their store on via Montenapoleone in Milan. Northern European design was not widely known in Italy at this time, and it is largely as a result of this pioneering work that De Padova quickly gained recognition as a leading source of furniture in the region.
In the 1960s De Padova obtained a licence from American furniture manufacturer Herman Miller and added to their range products by George Nelson and Ray and Charles Eames. Also to be seen at their Corso Venezia showroom in Milan were the designs of Rolf Heide, Ross Little, Herbert Hirche and Ingo Maurer.
In the 80s the company abandoned the relationship with Herman Miller and launched their own trademark ‘Edizioni De Padova’. Works from Achille Castiglioni, Dieter Rams and Vico Magistretti ensured that products produced under the new trademark contributed to the De Padova name. An exhibition of Shaker furniture exhibition in 1984 reiterated De Padova’s ambition to introduce unfamiliar furniture concepts successfully to the market.
In collaboration with Renzo Piano, De Padova contributed to the fitting out of the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, Morgan Library’s Restaurant in New York and Il Sole 24Ore newspaper headquarters in Milan.
Maddalena De Padova's services to the industry were recognised in 2004 when she was awarded the 20th Compasso d’Oro award. The company is now run by her children, Valeria and Luca, who continue to expand the family business and uphold the values that distinguish it.
“A store ought to move, to produce sensations, to offer visitors a meeting place for cultural initiatives that generate interest, curiosity, emotion.”