Rometti’s production values are based on 90 years of uninterrupted activity in the field of artistic ceramics and the continuous search for new technical and aesthetic solutions. The company has always worked with well-known artists and designers to create original and innovative objects. Unprecedented forms, precious decorations and complex enamelling and moulding techniques, give life to accessories that blend design and craftsmanship and express a refined and contemporary art de vivre.
Vases, lamps, tables, sculptures, tableware and other furnishings are available in prestigious stores worldwide as well as from the Rometti showroom itself in Umbertide, Italy.
The natural clay we use for our creations comes from a local quarry near the Tiber River, whose origins date back to Roman times and we have adopted the antique method of making ceramics used by the original Rometti. The objects, thrown on the wheel, are coated with a special engobe to give real emphasis and depth to the colours and decoration. We experiment for a long time with complex and refined techniques, which differ according to the characteristics of the item being produced, such as hand painted, engraved, etched, airbrushed and enamel finishes. The enamels are often created by us through intricate and passionate alchemy.
This exclusive handmade production of objects, no two exactly the same, is the guarantee of a unique and original product.
‘Ceramiche Rometti’ was founded in 1927 in Umbertide (Perugia) and grew in one of the most productive cultural areas of Italy.
Founded by Settimio Rometti, an expert ceramicist, the factory came about in a period of moderate economic well-being, which favoured sensitive and cultured craftsmanship.
Alongside his nephews, Aspromonte Rometti and Dante Baldelli, Settimio pursued an ambitious plan; to produce objects that synthesized art, craftsmanship and industrial production, in line with the new international design trends.
Dante Baldelli attended the Roman Academy of Fine Arts and in the capital‘s artistic environment, enlivened by triumphant futurism, met Corrado Cagli and Mario Di Giacomo; two artists who would go on to experiment with the ceramics at Umbertide with complete freedom of expression.
Thus were new shapes and sculptured figures born; unique or limited edition vases, lamps and etched or painted plates. The artistic climate of the European avant-garde was breathed into the stylized sculptures by Cagli and Di Giacomo. The nero fratta, an enamel similar to metallic car paint, lends itself to suggestive, plastic themes, while mostly black figures stand out in tight or concentric lines on the famous vases and dinner services by Baldelli, full of symbolic references to the Umbrian land.
The Umbertide factory had its best period, creating objects of great graphic and formal origins that generated a trail of emulators and which fascinated collectors all over the world.
At the end of the 1930s, Corrado Cagli left Umbertide and Dante Baldelli took on the role of artistic director.
In the immediate period after, Rometti won important awards for the modern and experimental character of its production, including the Gold Medal at the Nice International Exposition (1931) and awards at the Milan Triennale (1933).
In the ‘40s it collaborated with great artists such as the sculptor Leoncillo Leonardi and in the following decade, experimented in a productive partnership with Ceramiche Pucci.
In the economic boom years the company transferred to the Finocchi family, which dedicated itself to large-scale production, thus entering Italian homes with valuable objects for daily use.
In 2012 the company was purchased by Massimo Monini, a passionate collector and entrepreneur expert in art, who, with the fundamental contribution of the skilled Rometti workers and Artistic Director Jean Christophe Clair, brought production back to today’s extraordinary levels of quality and massive investment in research and design.
The twenties were successful years for factory in Umbertide. Adhering to the ideology of the time, artistic heads of Mussolini were produced, as well as commemorative objects of great graphical and formal clarity. Settimio Rometti was the Socialist mayor of Umbertide in 1920 and 1921. However, during the same period his brother Clotide emigrated to Nice, where he hosted Italian exiles such as Nenni and Pertini (who worked as a bricklayer in one of his construction sites). Between 1928 and 1930 the factory produced ceramics designed by Giacomo Balla and Fortunato Depero, under the brand names “Ceramiche Rometti” and “Ars Umbra”. In 1930 collaboration with Cagli came to an end, his role being taken over by the painter Giovanni Ciangottini. In the next few years the modern and experimental nature of the company’s products earned it many awards, such as the gold medal at the Nice International Exposition (1931), and it received invitations to take part in the Fiera del Levante in Bari and the Crafts exhibition in Florence (1932). The company, which also won an award at the Milan Triennale (1933), then went though a difficult period that ended in bankruptcy in 1934. After various ups and downs, during which Settimio, Aspromonte, and Dante Baldelli temporarily left the company, it was renamed “S.A.C.R.U.” (Società Anonima Ceramiche Rometti Umbertide), and from 1938 to 1942 it worked in collaboration with the sculptor Leoncillo Leonardi. From 1942 to 1947 there were two companies, “S.A.C.R.U.” and “Rometti Settimio Fabbricazione Ceramiche Artistiche”, which opened a factory in Via Tiberina immediately after the war.
Over the last forty years, Ceramiche Rometti has achieved numerous awards and prestigious partnerships. Important brands make use of its internationally appreciated know-how: B & B, Roche Bobois, Cartier, Borbonese and Fresh, to name just a few.
Over the years, renowned artists and great names in international design have collaborated with Rometti: Carlos Pazos, Ambrogio Pozzi, Lilian Lijn, Monica Pioggia, Louis de Limburg Stirum, Sergio Fiorentino, Chantal Thomass, Lorena D’Ilio, Kenzo Takada , Ugo La Pietra and Christian Tortu.
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