Design is on its knees: “Without the Salone, we just want to reopen”

Design is on its knees: “Without the Salone, we just want to reopen”

“We are concerned because several small enterprises are going through heavy difficulties: some of them run the risk of shutting down”. Claudio Luti, president of Federlegno-Arredo, speaks plainly: design is on its knees. Italy’s manufacturing industries need to start again, as soon as possible, to get over Coronavirus outbreak and its detrimental effects. Undoubtedly, scars caused by lockdown are proving to be deep. Likewise, the missed edition of Salone del Mobile 2020 is not just “a date being crossed out of the agenda – he pointed out while talking to the Corriere della Sera –. It is actually a divide between before and after”.

Design is on its knees

What are Italy’s design companies demanding? “We want to reopen and work, since the home furnishings industry cannot fade: it is unique – answered Luti –. Its beauty, which is also a weak point in the current situation, lies in its being composed of several small and family-run businesses, which now are in danger of closing forever. This is a very serious issue: in fact, made in Italy manufacturing cannot exist without them”. Looking at its dynamics, they are not that far from the fashion industry ones after all: “We succeed in making some products exclusively thanks to the capable commitment of all players, from top designers and architects to small entrepreneurs and artisans – continued the chief leader of Federlegno-Arredo –, who are on their knees and will be compelled to shut down. They will not be able to reopen anymore. Besides that, they fear they are going to replace them. Rather than asking for any economic support, they do want to start working again, right now.

Talking about economy

“Looking at figures, missed income amounts to 1.3 billion euros”, remarked the interviewer, while talking about the economic loss following the cancellation of the Salone event: “In the last financial statements, we took a record of costs only. We had no income at all”, cut her off Luti. He is well aware that the industry must now try its best to get past such bad situation. Yet, “both the government and Europe will have to support us”. Which way? “They will not have to overburden us with too much bureaucracy, therefore making our work smarter, not only from home – he wrapped up –. They are supposed to support exports alongside our entrepreneurial system, in order to enable it to play a fair game as much as competitors. We shall face a global challenge in a new global world”.

In the picture, taken from La Conceria’s archive: a leather upholstery stitching phase

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