This Generation – Maurizio Cattelan

Bringing back 'This Generation- meet the designer theme, holding to the spirit of our newly redesigned Hyde Park showroom highlighting Seletti and its vibrant product ranges we would like to share the story of Maurizio Cattelan – Seletti Toiletpaper Designer.  Cattelan was born in Padua, Italy, in 1960. Cattelan has no formal training and considers himself an “art worker” rather than an artist, has often been characterized as the court jester of the art world.

Maurizio Cattelan

Maurizio Cattelan, in collaboration with the Italian photographer Pierpaolo Ferrari, created ToiletPaper Magazine; a bi-annual visual publication. Started in 2009, it still runs and still is an interesting mix of cultural forces on the artistic publishing world.

The entire Toilet Paper philosophy is based on compelling and often disturbing images, our minds race to make sense of them, thereby leading to fantastic interpretation and creative thinking. Toilet Paper, if anything, can be seen as an artist’s attempt to make sense of the random and the arbitrary – and in so doing lends to us a powerful artistic voice.

In 2013, Toilet Paper collaborated with an Italian design company, Seletti, to create a series of tableware and kitchen objects that were heavily inspired by the motifs inherit in the magazine itself. Many Toilet Paper images are contained within the objects, such as the infamous severed fingers (available in enamel plates and mugs instore), a kitchen plunger, a rampant horse and many others and are “perfectly aligned with the pop spirit of the magazine”.  

The idea of an image being one of the most important and primal ways of understanding art that dates back to cave paintings on stone walls – humanity has always had a longing for narrative and story, and images are understood on a similar level that music is. By diverting language, everyone in the world is able to see an image and understand it, for an image is itself true – no matter what kind of manipulations went into the composition of the image itself, images cannot lie. By not allowing the viewer anything other than a glimpse, a single frame, the interpretative parts of the viewer’s imagination are allowed to run wild. Like ceramicplates with a ‘Toad Burger’ or eyeballs on them.